One of Korea’s three largest banks Shinhan is testing “vault and wallet services” in a world first for the banking industry.
Shinhan Could Offer Bitcoin Storage In ‘Virtual Safe’
Sources on social media quoting local media outlet Naver state that Shinhan Bank is already working on a functional product which will be designed for public release.
The tool is the result of Shinhan being awarded a third-party contract, according to the publication.
In allowing customers to store Bitcoin with a wallet, Shinhan would become the first major bank to also offer Bitcoin storage services direct. An unnamed official commented:
This is a service which allows Blockchain keys to be stored via the virtual safe in our bank. […] We are looking at ways to provide the service for free when making deposits, with a fee charged for withdrawals.
Trend Could Rope In Many Banks In Coming Years
The news broke on Twitter via Crypto Korean, who agreed with responses that Shinhan would become “Coinbase with a real bank behind it.”
“…I guess many banks will do this over the coming 1-2 years,” the commentator continued. “Banks will literally do anything that they can make money.”
1. Shinhan Bank (approx. 2nd-3rd largest bank) in Korea is in test phase to build cryptocurrency vault/wallet services amid of recent Bithumb exchange hacks in June which leaked 30,000 users details as well as server crash in November. Source: https://t.co/ek23HyE7sF pic.twitter.com/gRB1mFrGPs
— Crypto Korean 🇰🇷한국 (@CryptoKorean) November 24, 2017
In addition to the wallet, the bank will also build peripheral infrastructure to serve its Bitcoin ecosystem, including mobile apps and statistics and analysis portals.
Korea has faced a turbulent year as one of the world’s biggest Bitcoin traders. The country’s major exchange Bithumb suffered a major hack earlier in the summer, losing millions of won and sensitive user data to malicious actors.
“When a key stored in a terminal is stolen by an attacker, assets and confidential transactions protected by the key can be leaked,” the Korean Financial Supervisory Service’s Kim Dong-jin said at a conference last month.
Meanwhile, the Korean government continues to issue warnings about certain aspects on cryptocurrency, notably ICOs, on which it has imposed restrictions amounting to a de facto ban.
What do you think about Shinhan Bank’s move to develop a Bitcoin wallet? Let us know in the comments below!
Images courtesy of Wikimedia Commons