Coinbase has denied a report that the U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement is using its proprietary “historical geo tracking data” to track and identify people based on their crypto transaction history.
The report, published on Thursday by The Intercept, referred to a copy of the August 3, 2021 contract between ICE and Coinbase. Although the contract was initially reported on in September last year, new details were made available through a redacted copy of the contract obtained by Jack Poulson, director of the watchdog organization Tech Inquiry, through a Freedom of Information Act request.
On page 19 of the contract, a price list and proposal from Coinbase says that its Analytics web browser tool allows users to track data related to Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, Litecoin, Tether and other cryptocurrencies, including all ERC-20 tokens on the Ethereum network.
The proposal also says that its software can perform “transaction demixing,” “shielded transaction analysis,” and, controversially, “historical geo tracking data.”
That’s the detail that prompted the company to respond on Twitter.
“Coinbase does not sell proprietary customer data,” the company wrote in a short thread on Twitter yesterday.
1/ We want to make this incredibly clear: Coinbase does not sell proprietary customer data. Our first concern has been and always will be providing the safest and most secure crypto experience to our users.