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DRW VC Portfolio Company Spotlight: David Janczewski, Coincover


Coincover sets the standard for safety and protection in the crypto environment, providing loss prevention technology and theft cover. David Janczewski, Coincover’s CEO, opens up to us about the inspiration that led to the security service and how their approach is becoming a global standard in the industry.

What inspired Coincover?

I was lucky enough to be involved in a “Digital Gold” project at the UK’s Royal Mint as part of a project to investigate the future of money. In doing so, I became completely immersed in the world of digital currencies.

What became clear to me during that time was that there was a lot of potential in digital currencies and I was incredibly excited by that. However, I also realized there was a huge problem: crypto had the potential to be more secure than it was at the time. Consumers need to be able to rely on fundamental protections to keep their salary and savings safe; institutions and governments need a world where a lost password can’t render millions of dollars unusable.

Additionally, with the technical complexity and the increased sophistication of hackers and fraudsters targeting the space, the need for an industry-standard in safety and security was obvious. Coincover was established in 2018 to provide that safety standard.

How is Coincover changing the way we understand crypto and its safety?

There are over 190 million crypto accounts globally. Yet, we are still in the early adopter stage of the market and the vast majority of the world’s population is not holding cryptocurrency. Outside of concerns on the volatility of value, one of the biggest hurdles to getting involved are concerns over fraud, theft and the nightmare of lost passwords and inaccessible funds. For many of those, ‘outside’ crypto simply feels inherently risky – a ‘wild west’.

Coincover helps to mitigate that risk. In the same way that traditional currencies are protected by FDIC and other national deposit protection guarantees, we provide the cryptocurrency equivalent - making cryptocurrency safer to have and to use. We may not be able to stabilize Bitcoin values, but as some have said of us, “the roller-coaster just got safety belts.”

What does it mean to be Protected by Coincover?

Being Protected by Coincover means you will never lose access to your funds.

We do two things for our customers – recover access to funds by using our loss prevention technology, and replace the value of funds lost to theft or infrastructure failure through an insurance-backed guarantee from Lloyd’s of London underwriters. We prevent the most likely problems and protect against the worst, should it happen.

What is the greatest risk or misconception surrounding ownership of cryptocurrency and how does Coincover mitigate this risk?

We deal with both the reality and perception of risk, and it’s clear most consumers have concerns surrounding fraud and theft above most other risks. However, the truth is that the biggest risk factor in holding and using cryptocurrency is the consumer themselves. Estimates suggest that about 20% of Bitcoin (currently worth around $130 billion) is lost or stranded in locked-off digital wallets. It’s not stranded through fraud or theft, —it’s almost entirely human error.

Add to that the security complexity of cryptocurrency keys and seed phrases (with sequences ranging from 12-24 words) multiplies the risk of human error. A lot of the value we offer is in protecting consumers from themselves. Telling people they’re the biggest risk factor is one of those marketing challenges we look forward to cracking!

How will Coincover’s approach to insuring digital assets become the global standard in crypto safety? What makes Coincover superior?

It’s the combination of three things: First, our “Prevent” technology means that crypto consumers need not worry losing access to their accounts. Second, our “Protect” insurance-backed guarantee means if the worst happens - fraud, theft or insolvency - consumers can recover the value of those funds. And third, it’s the fact that the world’s leading insurance provider is providing that guarantee, and they only do so because our “Prevent” tech reduces their likelihood of receiving a claim in the first place. It’s a virtuous circle that gives us a significant competitive advantage.

What do you foresee Coincover’s role will be in driving the future of the crypto landscape in the coming years?

There’s no question that the market is rapidly evolving and maturing, but the transformational potential of cryptocurrency can only be delivered if some of the unnecessary fears and legitimate risks are addressed.

We are a key pillar in that evolution, and our role in that is to protect the interests of the consumer. Crucially though, in doing so, we protect our partners. We help them accelerate growth by improving the quality of their offer, and to build additional revenue streams. We help protect their reputation and legal risk and help to create a shield against unnecessary regulatory pressure.

Essentially, we help every player in the market sleep better at night, and that’s key to helping crypto move forward.

Learn more about Coincover.