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Gekkard: Banking Alternative

latest release: 1.0.5 ( 19th August 2021 ) last analysed  17th November 2021 Custodial: The provider holds the keys 
2.8 ★★★★★
32 ratings
1 thousand
30th January 2020

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Do your own research!

Try out searching for "lost bitcoins", "stole my money" or "scammers" together with the wallet's name, even if you think the wallet is generally trustworthy. For all the bigger wallets you will find accusations. Make sure you understand why they were made and if you are comfortable with the provider's reaction.

If you find something we should include, you can create an issue or edit this analysis yourself and create a merge request for your changes.

The Analysis 

App Description

This app is from the same providers as Blackcatcard: IBAN, Mastercard Custodial! 

Gekkard is a mobile banking app that gives you access to the European IBAN account with a payment card and provides you access to partner’s digital investment opportunities!

Gekkard claims to use a partner’s investment ecosystem, Gekkoin.

Take the most out of Gekkard and use our partner’s investment ecosystem Gekkoin* linked with your Gekkared account. This way you can bring your financial management to the new level:

Buy and sell cryptocurrency on Gekkoin* ecosystem exchange without additional AML compliance: set up your Gekkoin* crypto wallet and buy Gekkoin Europe (EURG) in order to invest in Bitcoin, Ethereum and Monero.

At the end of the description, there is a note saying that ‘Gekkoin’ is:

Represented by a licensed cryptocurrency exchange AtlantEX OÜ

The Site

From Terms and Conditions, 10.1:

If we suspect that fraudulent activity is being conducted on your User Account, you acknowledge that for the purpose of protecting you we have the right to temporarily suspend your User Account in order to prevent further or continuing the unauthorized activity.

Additionally, 8.4 also states that this platform is able to suspend your account:

If you attempt to close your User Account during our investigation, we may hold back your funds for a period of up to 180 days, for the purpose of protection of Adventarium or third parties from the risk of cancellation, refund, lawsuit, payment of fees, levies, fines, and other financial obligations.

The App

We tried the app. However, before registration, the app states that it requires identity verification. Users must provide documents such as a selfie photo, valid government issued ID, and Proof of Residence.

Verdict

We conclude that this is a custodial app and therefore not verifiable.

(dg)

Verdict Explained

As the provider of this product holds the keys, verifiability of the product is not relevant to the security of the funds!

As part of our Methodology, we ask:

Is the product self-custodial? If not, we tag it Custodial! 

A custodial service is a service where the funds are held by a third party like the provider. The custodial service can at any point steal all the funds of all the users at their discretion. Our investigations stop there.

Some services might claim their setup is super secure, that they don’t actually have access to the funds, or that the access is shared between multiple parties. For our evaluation of it being a wallet, these details are irrelevant. They might be a trustworthy Bitcoin bank and they might be a better fit for certain users than being your own bank but our investigation still stops there as we are only interested in wallets.

Products that claim to be non-custodial but feature custodial accounts without very clearly marking those as custodial are also considered “custodial” as a whole to avoid misguiding users that follow our assessment.

This verdict means that the provider might or might not publish source code and maybe it is even possible to reproduce the build from the source code but as it is custodial, the provider already has control over the funds, so it is not a wallet where you would be in exclusive control of your funds.

We have to acknowledge that a huge majority of Bitcoiners are currently using custodial Bitcoin banks. If you do, please:

  • Do your own research if the provider is trust-worthy!
  • Check if you know at least enough about them so you can sue them when you have to!
  • Check if the provider is under a jurisdiction that will allow them to release your funds when you need them?
  • Check if the provider is taking security measures proportional to the amount of funds secured? If they have a million users and don’t use cold storage, that hot wallet is a million times more valuable for hackers to attack. A million times more effort will be taken by hackers to infiltrate their security systems.
The product cannot be independently verified. If the provider puts your funds at risk on purpose or by accident, you will probably not know about the issue before people start losing money. If the provider is more criminally inclined he might have collected all the backups of all the wallets, ready to be emptied at the press of a button. The product might have a formidable track record but out of distress or change in management turns out to be evil from some point on, with nobody outside ever knowing before it is too late.