What Is a Cryptocurrency Exchanges? – Types, History, and More

cryptocurrency exchanges

What Is a Cryptocurrency Exchanges?

Cryptocurrency exchanges are like the stock market. But for cryptocurrencies. Buyers and sellers offer a platform to exchange different assets valued based on current market prices.

Exchanges typically offer classic fiat-to- cryptocurrency transactions but also cross- cryptocurrency transactions. For example, on the South African currency exchange Coindirect, a client can buy bitcoin with South African rand or euros or exchange their bitcoin for Ripple’s XRP.

What are The Types of Cryptocurrency Exchanges?

There are three types of cryptocurrency exchanges:

Trading Platforms:  Platforms that connect buyers with sellers.

Brokers:  Platforms that sell cryptocurrencies at a price set by the broker. These are similar to the service providers that offer Forex.

Direct Trading:  Platforms that offer direct peer-to-peer or peer-to-peer trading. And also, this allows users to exchange currencies around the world, and the seller and buyer decide the price.

History of Cryptocurrency Exchanges

  1. In 2004 three Australian-based numerical currency exchange businesses voluntarily closed down following an Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC).
  2. The ASIC viewed the facilities offered as legally needful an Australian Financial Services License, which the companies lacked.
  3. In 2006, U.S.-based numerical currency exchange commercial Gold Age Inc., a New York state business, was shut down by the U.S. Secret Service after operating since 2002.
  4. Business operators Arthur Budovsky and Vladimir Kats indict “on charges of operating an illegal digital currency exchange and money transmittal business” from their apartments, transmitting more than $30 million to digital currency accounts.
  5. And also, customers provided limited identity certification and could transfer funds to anyone worldwide, with fees sometimes exceeding $100,000.
  6. Budovsky and Kats sentence in 2007 to five years in prison “for engaging in the business of transmitting money without a license, a felony violation of state banking law”, ultimately receiving sentences of five years’ probation.
  7. And also, a few weeks later, E-Gold confronted four indictments.
  8. In July 2008, E-gold’s three directors accepted a bargain with the prosecutors and pleaded guilty to one count of “conspiracy to engage in money laundering” and one count of the “operation of an unlicensed money transmitting business”.E-gold ceased operations in 2009.
  9. Following the launch of a devolved cryptocurrency bitcoin in 2008 and the subsequent introduction of other cryptocurrencies, many virtual platforms create to exchange decentralized cryptocurrencies. Their regulation differs from country to country.
  10. In February 2014, Mt. Gox, the largest cryptocurrency exchange, suspended trading, closed its website and exchange service, and filed for bankruptcy protection in Japan from creditors.
  11. And also, in April 2014, the company commenced liquidation proceedings.
  12. This resulted from a large theft of bitcoins that stole straight out of the Mt. Gox hot wallet over time, beginning in late 2011.

Advantages of Cryptocurrency Exchanges

1. Centralized



2. Decentralized

Mitigating hacking risk

Preventing market manipulation


Disadvantages of Cryptocurrency Exchanges

1. Centralized

Hacking risk

Transaction fees

2. Decentralized


Lack of fiat payments

Liquidity struggles


Cryptocurrency exchanges facilitate the trading of cryptocurrencies for other assets, including digital and fiat currencies.

In effect, cryptocurrency exchanges act as intermediaries between a buyer and a seller and make money through commissions and transaction fees.

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