CEX.IO is an online cryptocurrency exchange platform that allows traders to buy, sell, trade, store, and even lend crypto.
The exchange was first launched in 2013 with a primary goal to provide Bitcoin cloud mining to users by offering a hashing power marketplace to rent mining power through an in-house developed mining pool called GHas. IO.
The main driver behind the launch was to provide individuals access to mining activities without investing in heavy equipment and infrastructure.
In 2016 end, the exchange developed to undergo change management and convert into an exchange ecosystem given the hashing business’s lack of interest and profitability.
CEX.IO is regulated and offers services to over four million users.
The exchange segregates its market segments into three divisions: Traders, Everyone, and Businesses.
The first category, also known as Traders, can utilize spot trading, margin trading, and the mobile app for on-the-go trading.
The second category, also known as Everyone, is a simple platform for storing cryptocurrencies, performing fiat-to-crypto purchases, and utilizing the staking and lending portals.
Finally, the third category is Businesses, which have access to CEX.IO Prime, which offers institutional-grade trading services with premium access to liquidity and business-standard order filling.
Currently, the exchange lists over 100 coins, including Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Tether (USDT), and USD Coin (USDC). The exchange is one of the most global platforms supporting more than 99% of countries along with 48 U.S. states.
CEX.IO LTD has been registered as Money Services Business (MSB) with the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), with a physical presence in U.K., U.S., Gibraltar, and Cyprus.
Is CEX.io Exchange Limited To Expert Traders?
At CEX.IO, beginner traders feel overwhelmed by the breadth of trading options provided under the primary trading sections.
CEX.IO has gained a reputation for mainly catering to advanced traders relying on complex trading tools.
The exchange is designed for traders who warrant access to margin, futures, and options trading both on the browser and through mobile trading; CEX.IO provides its unique advanced features on all platforms and devices.
CEX.IO offers a wide range of products and features targeted at segmented market tranches, thus making it less user-friendly for beginner traders. CEX.IO is strictly committed to abiding by Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and Know Your Customer Policy (KYC), designated to prevent and mitigate possible risks that the exchange may unknowingly be involved in any illegal activity.
Although beginner traders can still benefit from the offerings of CEX.IO, advanced traders may be better poised to benefit from the complex financial services coupled with product segmentation based on market participants.
CEX.IO Pros & Cons
- CEX.IO has been granted licenses by regulatory authorities to offer its services safely to investors
- Supports the leading cryptocurrency with more than 100 coins listed
- Market segmentation to better offer catered services and business-grade execution
- Advanced products ranging from derivatives products, crypto-loans, and crypto-staking
- Global cryptocurrency exchange with reach to over 99% of regions
- Trading interface tends to be complicated for beginner traders given the complex nature of products offered
- Lower liquidity for certain crypto-pairs despite the global reach
- Complicated fee structure
- Limited educational content with an underperforming guide section
- Verification can be extensive with too many verifications required from users when compared to competitors
Our Take CEX.IO
CEX.IO has gained momentum over the past couple of years after the switch from a cloud mining business.
The exchange carries a twist for experienced users. CEX.IO is truly global offering its services in 99% of the countries with 48 states within the U.S. serviced.
However, traders must be wary of mixed customer reviews claiming that CEX.IO features poor customer service and lacks educational content and detailed guides.
The exchange offers excellent opportunities for traders to capitalize on and expand their assets portfolio through utilizing financial services such as crypto trading, loans, and staking.
In terms of platform security, multiple regulating bodies license the exchange, especially within the U.K.
The interface is clean and easy to navigate thanks to the modern intuitive design.
In addition, the exchange offers a mobile app that permits users to monitor their asset portfolio and relative performance anytime and anywhere.
However, one drawback to the amplitude of products and derivatives provided by CEX.IO is that it may seem daunting to new users leading to wrong financial and trading decisions; thus, more educational material pushed by the exchange is warranted.
Our take is that the exchange is a fair first step into entering the world of cryptocurrency.
However, users must take the highest levels of precaution when dealing with new products.
It is always recommended to drive a shift towards decentralized exchanges that do not have a centralized authority over users’ funds and are often less susceptible to being hacked.
Compared to global exchange leaders, it is immediately evident that the exchange ranks significantly lower in terms of fees, especially for premium users and high-volume traders.
This is because CEX.IO adopts a tier-level system for fees based on the volume traded by the users, whereby more details can be found on the official exchange website.
CEX.IO fees start at a maker fee of 0.25% and a taker fee of 0.15%, which refer to transaction fees that users incur when orders are placed and filled.
In addition, unlocking a higher level of account limits can be done by completing the KYC identity verification and address verification.
In addition, the exchange does not offer free-of-charge fiat deposits. It charges a percentage fee on the nominal value for deposits and withdrawals, excluding third-party or intermediary bank fees.
In terms of deposit fees, CEX.IO does not charge any fees on crypto deposits but charges a percentage fee on crypto withdrawals.
Below is a deep dive into the critical highlights of the exchange fees:
- Trading transaction fees start at 0.25% for marker fees and 0.15% for taker fees and can go as low as 0.01% for maker fees and 0.00% for taker fees for the highest VIP level based on the 30-day volume traded.
- Higher-volume traders and traders carrying extensive futures or spot trading account balances will benefit from upgraded tiers
- Fiat withdrawal and deposit fees include a percentage fee on the nominal value.
- Referring friends and family to join CEX.IO through utilizing a personal referral code offers trading fee discounts and rebates
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Is CEX.IO Safe?
It is first necessary to note that CEX.IO has never been hacked before, and no user funds have been put under threat.
The exchange has always been committed to putting a strong focus and investments in regulatory compliance and asset security.
Currently, the exchange is regulated in all countries where it operates, whereby it carries an operating license.
Within the U.S., the exchange is registered with FinCEN as Money Services Businesses (MSB).
In addition, it has obtained money transmitter licenses (MTLs) in over 30 states within the U.S. As for Canada, CEX.IO is also registered as a Money Services Business (MSB) with FINTRAC.
Additionally, CEX.IO has been granted temporary registration as a crypto asset business by the U.K. Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) allows the exchange to conduct crypto activities while the FCA finalizes the company’s application.
CEX.IO does not hold any user funds within hot wallets, as those are used explicitly for company funds. Instead, user funds are stored within cold wallets only.
Cold wallets are wallets that are not connected to the internet, making them more secure.
Only a small portion of the funds are converted to hot wallets daily to cover trading activities fund’s needs.
Advanced traders will be at ease within the CEX.IO trading interface. The trading platform supports advanced options, including market, limit, stop orders, and advanced conditional trades.
Trading options can be divided into three main segments.
First, the trader can utilize the exchange’s spot and margin trading platform to enjoy leveraged trading and trading on the go using the exchange mobile app, which is available on both iOS and Android.
Second, on the market participants segments, everyone can utilize the instant buy feature to buy cryptocurrencies from the range of the coins offered by the exchange.
Additionally, users under this category can utilize the soft-staking platform in addition to the crypto loans to gain instant liquidity.
Finally, market participants under the Business category can sign up for the Prime membership, allowing businesses to access institutional-grade liquidity.
Additionally, the business can capitalize on the CEX direct option to integrate crypto payments within their payment gateways.
However, beginners may be overwhelmed by the diversity of the products.
Therefore, it is highly recommended for users familiarize themselves with the various products offered before engaging with the provided products.
Banking At CEX.IO
CEX.IO Deposit and withdrawal options vary by currency.
The options for each currency range from direct bank deposit and withdrawal, SWIFT transfers, ACH transfers, card transfers, and other currency-specific methods.
However, users can stay updated with detailed information directly from the official website.
In addition, it has been heavily reported that the exchange is reliable when honoring deposit and withdrawal clearances.
The exchange offers a plethora of crypto banking options. It is committed to providing such services, including Crypto Visa Card, crypto loans, and crypto staking.
In addition, however, CEX.IO offers P2P trading, a service designed to exchange funds between two users whereby one user sends fiat money to the other user in exchange for a specific cryptocurrency at the user-defined exchange rate and through the user-defined fiat payment method.
CEX.IO App Experience
The exchange offers its users a large selection of trading tools with high accessibility and deep liquidity to ensure timely order filling and optimal price quotes.
The exchange users can manage their accounts from the website or the mobile app available on Android-supported phones and iOS.
The CEX.IO iOS app, which can be downloaded from the Apple Store, rates at 4.6 out of 5.0 stars, as opposed to 3.5 stars for the Android app, which can be downloaded from the Android Store, whereby both app versions share the same functionality and user interface.
The links for downloading the mobile apps can be found on the official CEX.IO website.
The mobile apps allow users to set price alerts when the cryptocurrency hits target prices.
Additionally, the applications feature 24/7 support in multiple channels to address user inquiries.
In addition, mobile apps pose an advantage over the traditional browser platform since the apps are faster, more responsive, and developed specifically for the platforms to ensure utmost compatibility.
Once traders log in, users can view the account balance, transaction history, and trade history.
Furthermore, users enjoy access to trading tools for spot, futures, options, and other trading needs on the app.
Additionally, users can opt for the mobile app’s financial services and earning tools.
Users can also benefit from real-time market data, market insights, and order books to ensure informed trading decisions can be taken.
The app provides a range of login options, including email and password combination, phone number and password combination, touch ID and face ID login options, Apple login option, and two-factor authentication (2FA) for enhanced security.
In addition, users are asked to complete a slide CAPTCHA to fight against bots clogging the network to ensure a seamless experience for real users.
CEX.IO Site Experience
The CEX.IO dashboard is extensive but focuses on being straightforward to ensure actions can be taken swiftly by traders.
From the account management portal, users can access all their account details.
The details include net portfolio balance in fiat currency, cryptocurrencies owned, trading history, and market data. CEX.IO divides its main product menu into three sub-menus for three market participants segments.
The exchange leads the way with industry analysis and research articles to provide deep insights into the market status and vital information that aids in shaping user trading decisions.
CEX.IO users can access their accounts from the supported browsers after entering their login details, and the user enables two-factor authentication (2FA).
Compared to prominent competitors, the CEX.IO exchange website and the interface feel modern and intuitive, whilst packed with advanced tools.
However, beginners might feel lost within the website given that products are not holistic in the sense that each type of market participant has designated and catered products specifically fitted for the trading needs.
Like all centralized exchanges, CEX.IO aggressively encourages completing the KYC process to unlock advanced trading tools and higher withdrawal limits.
In this sense, CEX imposes the KYC application as compulsory as it’s required to match its users with the AML and KYC requirements of its crypto operating licenses worldwide.
The KYC application document requirements vary by country.
The KYC process involves real-time identity verification, which includes facial recognition using a mobile or computer camera.
However, users can still opt to skip the KYC if they are content with the limits provided by unverified accounts.
The required information for KYC registration are:
- Full name as reflected in identity documents
- Permanent address
- Date of birth
- Contact information
- Email address
ID Verification Documents:
- Government Issued ID-Card
- Social Security Number
- Driver’s License
- Pan Card
- ID Card
Proof of Residence Documents:
- Municipal rates & taxes statement
- Municipality bill for utility services
- Internet service bill
- Landline telephone bill
- Bank statement
- Mortgage statement
- Government-issued documents
CEX.IO Global Restrictions
In terms of territory access and jurisdictions, CEX.IO is genuinely global because it covers more than 99% of the regions and countries worldwide.
Currently, CEX.IO covers 48 states within the U.S., making it one of the leading exchanges in the U.S. Users should always be wary of the updated banned countries list to ensure that no bans are in place under users’ jurisdiction, so users are encouraged not to store their entire portfolio within a centralized exchange and opt for utilizing decentralized exchanges.
CEX.IO Customer Service
Initially, after the change in management to halt cloud crypto mining services, many users were left unpleased.
However, the exchange was committed to providing top-tier customer service support by tackling multiple channels.
Below are the key highlights of the customer service provided by CEX.IO:
- Limited library of support articles and educational guides
- Essential support across social media, including Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc.
- Live support chat via telegram channel
- 24/7 telephone support, which is unique across competitors
- Support for three languages, English, Russian, and Spanish