Ireland more ‘crypto curious’ than other countries, says report

4 Apr 2022

Image: © Grandbrothers/Stock.adobe.com

Almost 60pc of Irish people surveyed are curious about cryptocurrency, while 18pc are crypto owners.

A new report from cryptocurrency exchange Gemini dubbed 2021 as a breakout year for crypto, with 41pc of global cryptocurrency owners buying their first digital assets that year.

The 2022 Global State of Crypto report also found that 41pc of those surveyed said they were ‘crypto curious’, which means they do not currently own crypto but are either interested in learning more or are likely to acquire cryptocurrency in the next year.

Future Human

The report surveyed nearly 30,000 adults across 20 countries, including 1,701 adults in Ireland.

Ireland was deemed to be the most crypto curious country surveyed, with 58pc of respondents indicating some interest in cryptocurrency. This was followed by Germany (53pc), Colombia (50pc) and the UK (49pc).

The survey also found that 18pc of Irish respondents currently own or have previously owned cryptocurrency.

Gillian Lynch, Gemini’s head of Ireland and Europe, said the survey shows “a strong appetite for crypto” in Ireland.

Gemini was founded in 2014 in the US by Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss. The company recently secured an electronic money licence from the Central Bank of Ireland.

“We look forward to bringing our simple and secure crypto services to customers in Ireland and Europe more broadly,” said Lynch.

Crypto challenges

While the report highlighted growth in ownership or interest in digital assets, it also cited concerns around cryptocurrencies particularly when it comes to regulation. More than a third (36pc) of European respondents who did not own cryptocurrency said there is legal uncertainty around it.

Last week, the European Parliament voted in favour of new rules to trace and identify crypto-asset transfers, in a bid to prevent their use in money laundering and other illegal activities.

The goal is to have crypto assets be traceable in the same way as traditional money transfers. The new rules would also remove minimum thresholds and exemptions, which means any transfer would need to be traced regardless of the amount.

Crypto has also been at the centre of several hacks in recent months. In August 2021, a major hack of a decentralised finance (DeFi) platform resulted in more than $600m in cryptocurrency being stolen. Last week, a major hack resulted also in approximately $625m worth of cryptocurrency being stolen from blockchain network Ronin, making it “the largest-ever DeFi exploit” recorded.

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Jenny Darmody is the deputy editor of Silicon Republic

editorial@siliconrepublic.com