One of the biggest features of Bitcoin is the lacking of chargebacks, which can be seen as an advantage and a disadvantage. By not having the ability to have chargebacks, sellers usually have the advantage when it comes to consumer protection.
But what about the buyer? This is where an escrow service comes in. Escrow services are a third party which both the buyer and seller both agree on to exchange the money and goods. The buyer sends the money to the escrow, while the seller sends the product.
Once both is confirmed, they are sent on their way. If one fails to hold their end of the bargain, the transaction is deemed invalid and anything sent to the escrow is returned to the original sender.
When “devthedev” on Bitcointalk reached out to me, I was extremely impressed by how seriously he was taking the escrow. Using multisig implementations, where it requires multiple signatures (hence the name) to send a transaction, and biometrics to really secure transactions as well as 2FA (more on that later). On top of that, it’s free.
1. Why did you start doing this?
I decided to start devscrow due to the fact that I’ve been noticing an increase in scammers around Bitcointalk. Devscrow helps protect all parties involved in a trade. Therefore, effectively reducing the amount of scams in the community. A community with a diminishing amount of users with malicious intent proves welcoming to new members learning about cryptocurrencies.
2. What IS an escrow service?
An escrow is a trusted third party that holds and releases funds according to individual transaction terms agreed upon by both the buyer and the seller.
3. How would I get started if I was interested in using your service?
First, post the terms of the trade within the thread, or a group PM if you’d prefer a private trade.
The buyer will then send his or her coins to a supplied address. After 4 confirmations the seller will be notified. After the buyer receives the product or service the Bitcoin will be released to the seller. If the buyer claims to have not received the product, the seller will be asked to provide information that shows it has been received. The Bitcoin will then be released to the party with the most concrete evidence.
4. History of Development?
In the past I’ve developed Crypto related sites including the famous “DevFaucet” which at one point had upwards of 3 thousand users. I also sprouted out the BTCDevelop network which provided developers free hosting for Bitcoin related scripts.
5. What makes you different from other escrow services?
Well to start, we use multisig wallets for each trade. The multi-signature protocol requires multiple signatures on a Bitcoin transaction. I’ve chosen some friends and trusted members of the community to sign off on transactions. Devscrow employs a 3-of-5 wallet which requires 3 of the 5 chosen people to sign off in order to release the escrow. The wallet is also secured with 2FA and Biometrics.
5. Current Status?
We’ve already provided escrow services for multiple trades and look forward to providing the service for the unforeseen future.
6. Why did you decided to charge nothing?
I feel that charging nothing for escrow makes the Bitcoin economy larger and healthier. I also tend to focus towards the long term economy rather than short-term profit.
For more information: http://devin.tv/escrow/
Featured image: Provided by Client
Escrow image in post: Google Images