Kraken Experience 2021 - Serious Broker or Pure Scam?
The crypto exchange Kraken is headquartered in San Francisco, USA, and has already been awarded several times as the best and safest trading platform by independent media. In this Kraken test, we check whether this is still true.
The operators see Kraken as one of the largest Bitcoin exchanges, especially for trading with euros. But you can also trade with Canadian dollars, American dollars, British pounds and Japanese yen on Kraken.
We share our Kraken experience in this review and determine in more detail whether investing in Bitcoin with Kraken is worth it. Furthermore, we take a look at the fees and the deposit and withdrawal options.
We also look at the currencies offered and the provider's security standards. There are also important warnings about the available app for mobile devices.
However, before we start with our detailed Kraken review, we would like to note that although Kraken is convincing in many aspects, our current test winner in the crypto exchange comparison is eToro.
The key data for Kraken
San Francisco, USA
Maker: 0.16%, Taker: 0.26%, (up to $ 50,000)
No (browser supported)
Master key, cold wallet, 2FA, PGP / GPG
USD, EUR, GBP, CAD, YEN
What is the Kraken Exchange?
Kraken was founded back in 2011, making it one of the very first crypto exchanges. At the time, Kraken was one of the first platforms to compete with the mountain (Mt. Gox).
But what exactly is behind the company founded by Jessie Powell, which has its headquarters in San Francisco?
At the Bitcoin exchange Kraken, three values are particularly emphasised:
INTUITIVE, PROFESSIONAL AND FOCUSED.
The licensed broker is also inspected and regulated by Germany's BaFin and Tokyo's judicial administrator.
The operators of the website place high value on the support of their platform and claim to have created the safest platform on the market.
In addition, according to their own statement, they attach great importance to very low Kraken fees. The history of Kraken is above all the history of Jesse Powell, who is considered one of the most influential people in blockchain development.
28 July 2011
May 3, 2013
Kraken beta version
September 10, 2013
February 16, 2014
Number 1 in the Euro Exchanges
15th September 2014
iOS application launch
October 28, 2014
Inclusion of American dollars and British pounds
March 1, 2017
Acquisition of Cryptowatch
Kraken Test: Advantages and disadvantages
In our Kraken review, we quickly noticed that the Kraken Exchange does a lot right. Especially the security of the website is very commendable. The website has been voted the safest exchange in the world several times and the operators seem to want to improve it even more.
The deposit methods are also better and more extensive than those of many competitors. You can make deposits with cryptocurrencies and fiat currencies.
However, the number of cryptocurrencies is rather mediocre compared to other exchanges. Currently, Kraken offers more than 45 tradable cryptocurrencies. Unfortunately, not all cryptocurrencies can be traded with fiat, but some must first be traded with each other. It is also only possible to trade cryptocurrencies; the provider does not offer any shares or commodities.
The transaction fees are negative, they are significantly higher for some currency pairs than on other sites and should be calculated in advance for every purchase and sale. The support is also below average compared to other providers.
On the other hand, it is praiseworthy that there are hardly any fees outside of the transaction fees. The provider does not charge any fees for a number of deposit types and also only very low withdrawal fees.
The website is very clearly and intuitively designed and offers simple step-by-step instructions on every topic for every investor.
Kraken registration: Opening an account
Our Kraken test showed that it is very easy to open a Kraken account and trade Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. In a few minutes, you have opened a Kraken account, and with the deposited funds you can immediately buy cryptocurrencies.
In the following, we explain the Kraken registration step by step.
Step 1: Registering with Kraken
To register with the Kraken broker, click on the menu item "Create Account" on the top right-hand side of the website.
For the registration itself, you only need a valid e-mail address, a desired username and a password.
The latter must be at least 12 characters long and contain a number, a letter and a special character. In addition, you can set the country and time zone and have to solve a CAPTCHA.
You then agree to the terms and conditions and click on register.
After a short time, you should receive a confirmation e-mail and verify your e-mail account either via an activation link or via the code sent to you. There are no Kraken fees for opening an account or for provisioning.
The Kraken website is available in several languages, but unfortunately not yet in German at the time of this test, so you will probably have to make do with English.
Security is very important on the website, which is why you have to perform a 2 FA authentication before every login. This is a common security measure that can be found at almost all Exchanges.
Step 2: Verification
After Kraken login, you will find a large yellow bar on the Kraken home page that prompts you to verify your account. Verification helps prevent money laundering and is necessary due to the Know-Your-Customer (KYC) regulations. These allow Kraken to operate as a regulated exchange.
To get to the user account verification, simply click the menu item "Verify Your Account for Crypto".
Here you must first select whether you want to open a "Personal" or "Business" account. For the purposes of this Kraken experience report, we will assume you have a Personal account.
There are three verification levels available on the Kraken Exchange: Starter, Intermediate and Pro. These verification limits determine how much money you can deposit and withdraw daily. If you only want to trade cryptocurrency and withdraw cryptocurrency, the "Starter" account is sufficient.
For the Starter Account you need:
First name and last name
The Starter Account allows you to deposit an unlimited amount of cryptocurrency and withdraw up to US$5,000 worth of cryptocurrency daily.
If, on the other hand, you would also like to withdraw fiat currency, you will need the Intermediate Account, which allows you to withdraw up to 100,000 US dollars in fiat currency daily and up to 500,000 US dollars monthly. The Pro Account, on the other hand, should not be necessary for most users.
For the Intermediate Account you need:
Proof of residence (e.g. through a utility bill)
Verification of your person by a selfie
The verification of the data by the Kraken support should normally only take 24 to 48 hours.
Step 3: Deposit money
Even before the verification of your account, you have the possibility to deposit cryptocurrencies into your account.
your Kraken account.
You have the following options
are available as deposit options.
After the verification process has been completed, you can also deposit fiat currency into your Kraken account in order to trade cryptocurrency.
To do this, simply click on the menu item "Funding" and select the desired deposit method.
Deposits can also be made after verification as a SEPA transfer and by credit card payment.
Our Kraken experience shows that it can take one to three days before your money is credited to Kraken.
Step 4: Trading with Kraken
Once the deposited amount has been credited, you can start buying Bitcoin and Co. at Kraken.
To do this, simply select the desired currency pair. For example, Euro-Bitcoin. You then get the menu item "Trade". Here you can select "Buy" Bitcoin or "Sell" Bitcoin and simply enter the desired amount you want to sell or buy.
You can trade with Kraken as a market order or as a limit order and the "total" price is displayed very clearly. Your old and open positions are also clearly displayed in the "New & Open Orders" order book.
Step 5: Withdrawals from Kraken
Crypto exchanges have increasingly fallen victim to hacker attacks in the past. Even if Kraken makes every effort to ensure security, a hacking attack on the exchange can never be ruled out with 100% certainty. That's why we strongly advise you to take the safekeeping of your coins very seriously.
If you want to store your cryptocurrencies in your own private wallet, you must of course withdraw them. You can withdraw cryptocurrencies by clicking on the menu item "Funding" and then on "Withdraw".
If you have a verified account, you can also have fiat currency paid out to a previously activated account here.
However, you should definitely check beforehand whether your personal wallet also supports the traded coins and open a new digital wallet if necessary.
Of course, every transaction takes a certain amount of time to be executed and if you have any problems, you should contact the customer service of Kraken or the respective wallet.
Buying, selling and also trading cryptocurrency is very easy at Kraken and should be done in a few minutes. Only our test winner eToro makes it even easier.
When choosing a crypto exchange like Kraken, investors should pay particular attention to the range of cryptocurrencies on offer, as well as the level of fees and costs and the user-friendliness of the platform. These are also the most important criteria for our Kraken test.
The offer of Kraken is average. Over 45 cryptocurrencies are offered, and various trading options are also available.
The trading options at Kraken
- Market order & limit order
- Stop Loss
- Take Profit
- Settle Option
- Combined Order Types
- Order Start Time
- Order Expiration
- Conditional close orders
The Kraken cryptocurrencies
The cryptocurrencies at Kraken can be traded with British Pounds, Euros, Canadian Dollars, Japanese Yen and American Dollars and of course with each other. BTC can of course be traded with any other coin.
The selection of cryptocurrencies is okay but not outstanding. However, the most important names such as: Kraken Bitcoin, Kraken IOTA, Kraken Ethereum, Kraken Bitcoin Cash and some more.
The following list shows all cryptocurrencies that can be traded on Kraken:
The Kraken demo account
Unfortunately, there is not yet a Kraken demo account with which the trader can get to know the platform. The trader must therefore make a deposit directly after opening the account. However, this does not immediately mean that this is a dubious provider.
Kraken fees & Kraken fees
As with all crypto exchanges, Kraken is also financed by charging transaction fees, which are incurred with every purchase or sale of cryptocurrencies.
Kraken Transaction Fees
Coincierge Icon 9Transaction fees are incurred per transaction and these depend on the asset used, currency pair, trading volume over the last 30 days and purchases or sales.
As a buyer, you usually have to pay a lower fee than the sellers.
If one also chooses the trading type "margin trading" on this platform, opening fees and rollover interest will apply. These types of fees are not discussed in detail here and can be viewed in more detail in the overview.
The following example will explain the Kraken fees in more detail.
Of course, all funds are listed before the purchase or sale of coins, so that every user can take them into account.
Kraken advertises as a company with allegedly very low Kraken fees, however, these are significantly higher compared to many other providers. More favourable fees can be found at eToro, for example.
Kraken payment methods
At Kraken, you have the option of trading a wide variety of fiat currencies and cryptocurrencies.
Deposits can be made by bank transfer. The method of transfer depends on the country of origin and the desired currency.
You cannot deposit British pounds or Japanese yen. However, transactions can be made with both.
Most bank transfers take between one and five days. Of course, the website has deposit limits:
For euros via European transfers, you have to deposit at least €1. Kraken does not charge any fees for this.
However, as soon as you have the same currency credited to your Kraken account via an international transaction, you have to deposit at least €50. Kraken also charges a fee of €5 for this.
It works the same way with American dollars. The fees here are also five American dollars.
Instant bank transfer
As a safety tip, however, we advise you to only deposit as much money as you actively need for trading. It is best to store coins that you do not want to trade actively in a private wallet and not leave them on the Bitstamp account.
This is the best way to protect yourself from outside access, even though the majority of Bitstamp crypto assets are in cold wallets that are not connected to the internet.
Only after you have gone through a complete verification process do you get full access to the trading platform with its functions and can make deposits and withdrawals in order to trade.
By the way: Our test winner eToro offers a pleasant Kraken alternative to direct crypto trading and allows you to load funds with various user-friendly payment service providers as part of CFD trading, including via PayPal and eWallets such as Skrill and Neteller.
Kraken deposits and withdrawals
As soon as you want to transfer the funds from your account back to your bank account, there is also a minimum withdrawal amount and a very small fee (less than one euro).
On average, a withdrawal takes between one and five working days. Withdrawals to the following providers are not possible:
Note: Withdrawals can only be made to the same bank account from which the deposits were made. This system is to prevent money from being laundered on a large scale.
Kraken Exchange - Functions
Kraken Features - Crypto Watch Kraken offers users many different features and everything is explained in simple step-by-step instructions. The trading options are very diverse and there are a large number of cryptocurrencies and a good selection of fiat currencies.
The website is currently available in English, Japanese, Chinese, Spanish, Portuguese, French and Turkish. Not, however, in German!
You should therefore look up the most important technical terms beforehand and research them carefully. Overall, we can recommend the Kraken platform for both new investors and experienced traders.
One of the most decisive functions of the Kraken Exchange is Cryptowatch. This is a trading platform with real-time data on cryptocurrencies, trading charts and various trading services. The data is sent directly from the cryptocurrency exchanges to Cryptowatch through their APIs.
The programme enables the visual representation of price changes and market trends. In addition, each user has the option to use popular charting tools and indicators.
One can connect Cryptowatch directly to the exchange used and make new transactions directly through this trading platform. Of course, the platform also offers signals via text message to mobile devices. Cryptowatch makes the Kraken Crypto Exchange much more interesting, especially for professional traders.
Kraken App - mobile Bitcoin trading possible
Kraken also offers a smartphone app for iOS and Android. This is very simple and clearly designed.
The Kraken test shows that the Kraken app proves to be very practical and enables great Kraken experiences, as you remain flexible with the application and are not tied to your desktop at home, but can also trade crypto on the go.
The app was already introduced in 2014. However, it has
taken offline in the meantime and was only available for download again in 2016.
If you search for Kraken App in the AppStore or on Google, you will not find it easily. Only the Kraken Pro app exists. Whereby the Pro is confusing here.
Downloading and using the Kraken app is completely free.
In our Kraken experience, we could not discover any "pro" features within the app and the difference between a normal Kraken user and a Pro user is not obvious to us.
By the way, since August 2018, the website can also be accessed by mobile phone or tablet via the normal link and all transactions can be carried out from there. Therefore, downloading the app is not mandatory.
Note: There are some misleading apps in the Appstore that are not officially supported by Kraken. These should be treated with caution. Do not use your API key, username or password to use these unofficial apps.
The mobile offering is easy to use and provides a pleasant Kraken alternative to the desktop version. The core functions are covered and the app also offers the ability to trade cryptos on the go.
However, the app does not provide access to advanced functionalities such as detailed charts.
For this, you need a better crypto broker that offers an excellent mobile trading experience. Kraken is not the best provider here . If you want to trade cryptocurrencies profitably on the move, you should take a closer look at our multiple test winner eToro.
The eToro app offers easy access to buying and selling 16 cryptocurrencies, with new coins being added all the time. Either real cryptocurrencies can be bought and securely deposited in the eToro Wallet (mobile wallet), or users can use the crypto CFDs preferred for crypto trading.
With crypto CFDs, money can be made from the performance of cryptocurrencies, regardless of whether these prices rise or fall, simply by taking the appropriate buy or sell position. In addition, crypto CFDs can be traded with leverage, which, however, also entails a higher risk.
Is there a Kraken Wallet?
After you have bought a cryptocurrency, you need to be able to access it. The codes to access cryptocurrencies are stored in wallets.
Wallets can be online, where they are called hot storage. Or offline, where they are called cold storage.
Note: A wallet has public and private keys. You can give your public key to anyone and they can send you cryptocurrency. Your private keys should not be shown to anyone! Think of it as an email account. The public key is your address and the private key is your password.
But is Kraken now its own wallet? The answer is sort of, but not really.
As you already learned in our Kraken review, Kraken is a crypto exchange that can (but shouldn't!) be used as a wallet. Kraken uses both hot and cold wallets to store cryptocurrency.
You should never hold all your cryptocurrency online. A combination of hot and cold storage is best. It is also better if you keep the hot and cold storage outside of Kraken, so you minimise the risk of taking damage from a hacker attack.
Kraken.com Experience: Licences and Security
Whoever wants to invest in cryptocurrencies and is looking for the right provider should only turn to the most experienced brokers on the market that operate with a valid licence.
The Kraken platform has been praised and awarded several times for its security measures. The website is also considered one of the most secure crypto exchanges in the world. But what exactly do the operators of the platform do against external attacks?
First of all, the website offers a standard two-factor authentication.
For this, the user must connect his mobile device to the account. As soon as you want to log into your account, a random code is generated on your mobile phone, which you have to enter into the system on your laptop. Only then will you have access to the trading platform.
Kraken Exchange Image - AnimationFurthermore, if you forget your password, no contact details will be sent to the e-mail address you entered previously. Every e-mail sent is also protected with PGP/GPG encryption. This is to prevent unauthorised persons from intercepting the message and reading the content.
Provided data is sent exclusively encrypted as far as possible, and all systems are isolated from each other.
In the event of a possible attack on the platform, it is therefore more difficult for hackers to get hold of all the data they need. In addition, all data is duplicated and cached several times a day.
Last but not least, the clients' assets are kept in a separate safe deposit box/account and are separated from the company's money.
Of course, despite all the measures, it is advisable for any new investor to first see the platform for themselves.
The technology is changing so quickly that it is possible that in a few months another website could be much more secure. At the moment, Kraken is considered to be the platform with the most modern security measures.
Kraken has an official licence from BaFin and can thus prove its seriousness.
But also the verification process of the customers in consideration of the KYC - regulation is an important indication for a correct operation and offers the users a safe environment and protects them from attacks.
ANYONE TRADING IN CRYPTO SHOULD BE AWARE THAT CRYPTO TRADING PLATFORMS ARE ALWAYS SUBJECT TO SUCH ATTACKS.
If you don't want to bother with additional security measures and fear for your coins, you should pay a visit to our test winner and Kraken alternative eToro.
The crypto CFD provider simplifies the crypto trading process through social trading, which benefits inexperienced traders in particular.
eToro enables traders to share in the success of other successful traders by copying their portfolios and strategies. In addition, eToro offers various training opportunities.
You do not have to worry about safekeeping of your coins when trading CFDs, as you do not own the coins directly.
Security levels of Kraken
Kraken offers different security tiers:
The security tiers at Kraken Exchange affect the wallet, Kraken account, investment scope and payment method limits. By default, Tier 0 is used, where no deposits or withdrawals are possible, neither digital nor real money. Verification is done via "get verified."
Here are the security tiers at Kraken Trade in detail:
Tier 0 is the first status directly after registration. Deposits and withdrawals are not yet possible, but Tier 0 gives an insight into the functions of Kraken.
Tier 1 allows deposits of cryptos and daily withdrawals up to a maximum of 2,500 USD or 20,000 per month. There are no deposit limits.
Fiat currencies cannot be used with Tier 1 and active trading is not yet possible. In order to use Tier 1, you need to provide your name, date of birth, country of origin and mobile phone number.
With Tier 2, the daily limit for withdrawals is USD 5,000. In addition, it is possible to transfer real money to the Kraken account in some countries.
In order to use Tier 2, it is necessary to provide the address.
Tier 3 requires verification of address, for example through a utility bill, and proof of identity with a passport or ID. The withdrawal limit here is USD 25,000 per day and orders can also be paid with fiat money.
Tier 4 is suitable for professional traders and private individuals with a very high trading volume. The funding and trading limits are significantly higher here than with Tier 3. Tier 4 allows payouts of up to USD 100,000 per day.
The requirement for this security level is a signed certificate of registration in addition to proof of address and identity. Experience shows that verification takes a few days.
Kraken Exchange Customer Service & Support
All beginnings are difficult, - even with the user-friendly Kraken Exchange, questions can arise from time to time. Whether on topics such as payment conditions, trading platform, fees or anything else - the first port of call for Kraken support should be the detailed FAQ section.
Kraken support is an important feature that testifies to the quality of the provider and is therefore an important aspect of this Kraken review. If the question cannot be answered by the detailed FAQ section, the path leads to personal support.
However, if all efforts are in vain, you have the option of contacting the operators of the platform directly.
Is Kraken a scam?
Kraken is by no means a scam. The platform is a licensed broker and is supervised by BaFin in Germany. This is the Federal Financial Supervisory Authority. In other words, a legally capable German federal agency with its headquarters in Frankfurt am Main and Bonn.
The Kraken website and trading platform is considered one of the safest on the market and has already been mentioned several times in well-known magazines. These include the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal and many more.
Moreover, the founder is a real person who is very well known in the crypto world.
Large, established platforms with a wide range of products, comprehensible apps, transparent fees, high security standards and many deposit options are recommended for newcomers to trading.
If you prefer not to open a Kraken account, there are various Kraken alternatives available. Here are the best ones at a glance:
If you don't feel like signing up for Kraken, eToro is a good alternative and you can trade many currencies, funds, shares, commodities and cryptos.
eToro is a regulated broker with low fees and many features such as social trading, where newcomers in particular can benefit from experienced traders by simply (legally) copying their strategy.
eToro allows trading with crypto CFDs as well as with real coins. In addition to trading with currently 13 cryptos, eToro also offers other interesting options for traders, such as:
Deposits are also secured at eToro (but here only up to a maximum of 20,000 euros per customer). The broker is regulated by the Cypriot financial supervisory authority CySEC. Due to the low fees, eToro is particularly interesting for day traders who want to make quick profits. The offer is rounded off by many useful practical tips and further training opportunities.
Plus500 also offers a wide range of products, but no real coins. The following is on offer:
Plus500 - like eToro - offers a demo account. Plus500 is available in 30 languages and the minimum deposit is only 100 euros. In addition, the broker offers its own user-friendly trading platform rather than the usual MetaTrader4.
Users do not need a wallet to trade via Plus500. The platform is user-friendly and the broker is regulated by various financial supervisory authorities. Plus500 is also a sponsor of a well-known Spanish football team.
Alvexo is also a suitable alternative to Kraken Login. This established broker scores with advanced technologies, competent customer service and a wide range of products.
Users can access more than 450 assets from CFDs, including:
Thanks to innovative analysis tools and many features, even beginners are enthusiastic about Alvexo. In the meantime, more than 650,000 clients belong to the customer base worldwide.
In addition, the provider organises several seminars and conferences to impart knowledge and help customers to make profits.
Reviews of Kraken on the Internet
Kraken experiences have apparently not been that good so far. Kraken Trading is currently rated 1.9 out of 5 stars on Trustpilot with 698 reviews on average. 13% have given Kraken the highest rating. 70%, on the other hand, find Kraken unsatisfactory. Let's start with two negative reviews and end with one positive review:
Here are some reviews:
Trini wrote on 3/11:
"Deposited money and so far 1 month ago no response. Customer support is just an autobot. Hands off. Really glad I didn't deposit a three figure amount. Just wondering where the money is now. Bank has no idea. Close the account again. Watch out, otherwise money gone."
Carsten Roth also didn't let Kraken off the hook on 11.3.21:
"Deposits have been on (hold) for weeks. The processing is slow, so that trading is not even possible. No reaction, no money back. No recommendation."
Spinix M, on the other hand, had a good experience and wrote on 25.2.21:
"Really top notch! Although I lost almost my entire fortune on this site, it really is a top crypto exchange. But what can you do, was your own stupidity. Everything is very simple, clear and well structured. Especially the smartphone app. Depositing fiat currencies via SEPA is really easy and there are no fees when depositing via SEPA. You can also deposit by credit card, but I haven't tried that yet. The trading fees are very, very low compared to other crypto exchanges. All in all, I think this crypto exchange is really great! I can only recommend it."
Opinions on the Kraken exchange and Kraken fees thus vary. However, we can confirm that Kraken is a reputable provider.
Kraken Exchange Test - our conclusion
Kraken conclusion Kraken is an established provider on the crypto market and enables trading with over 45 different cryptocurrencies. Although the range of cryptocurrencies could be a little better, it should definitely be enough for the first experiences.
If you take a closer look at what the platform has to offer, you will quickly realise that it is rather midfield compared to other exchanges.
The withdrawal and deposit fees are very low and significantly better than those of other providers. However, the operators charge higher transaction fees.
We find it very good that the website has countless step-by-step instructions to make it easier for new and experienced investors to get started.
On the negative side, however, is that the site is available in several other languages besides English.
What we can say with absolute certainty, however, is that Kraken Exchange is a reputable provider.
Recommended alternative to Kraken: eToro
If you want to buy Bitcoin quickly in Germany, we recommend the broker eToro. In addition to a clear user interface, state regulation and copy trading, the big advantage of the platform is that both Bitcoin CFDs and real Bitcoin are available for trading. Moreover, with ~1.8% total costs, eToro also proves to be the top dog in terms of price.
- Stock exchange and wallet in one
- Regulated provider
- Deposit with PayPal, credit card, SOFORT transfer and more
- Over 14 other cryptos tradable
- Equities and ETFs also available
Kraken is a regulated crypto exchange headquartered in San Francisco. The exchange is licensed and regulated by BaFin, among others. The exchange was the first fully regulated crypto exchange and offers trading in over 40 leading cryptocurrencies.
There is only a very low minimum deposit of one euro at Kraken. This means that trading can also be started with very small sums. How much money you invest ultimately depends on your own financial situation and willingness to take risks.
Withdrawals at Kraken are made by SEPA transfer to a bank account located in the EU. Payouts usually take between 1-3 banking days, depending on the bank and the time of application. Payouts can only be made to the account from which the deposit was made.
After registering with Kraken, you must confirm your email address and then verify your account. After that, the proof of identity and address is carried out. A scan of the passport or ID card as well as a utility bill with residential address must be submitted.
If you want to buy Bitcoin directly with euros, Kraken is the right place for you. If all requirements are met, you can get to the purchase menu with just a few clicks. There you can directly buy the selected EUR amount in Bitcoin according to the current exchange rate. This is a simple and convenient way to buy bitcoin within a few minutes.
Kraken offers trading in a total of more than 40 different cryptocurrencies. These include many well-known names such as Kraken Bitcoin, Kraken IOTA, Kraken Ethereum, Kraken Bitcoin Cash and many more.