As new consumer reports continue to shed light on the mounting consumer complaints levied against U.S. cryptocurrency companies, crypto regulation and consumer protection are increasingly becoming topics of interest for exchanges, traders, and crypto kiosk operators.
Just this year, Coinbase received almost 300 complaints to the U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). Other exchanges received complaints as well, highlighting the desperate need for the industry to take seriously the task of recording and managing customer complaints so that they don’t wind up in the hands of government agencies that seem more willing than ever to clamp down on the industry as it is.
The next regulatory touchpoint for the cryptocurrency industry will – or should – cover consumer protection. We’re seeing more and more regulators approaching crypto exchanges, traders, and kiosk operators as a result of consumer complaints.
Tracking Customer Complaints Doesn’t Need to be Difficult
So how can the industry do it? First, regulated cryptocurrency entities must implement detailed tracking and documentation of customer complaints on top of standard practices to manage and mitigate those complaints. Companies may be hesitant when considering the costs of elaborate tracking systems or expensive software packages, but tracking can begin with relatively inexpensive (or free) software, like a simple spreadsheet program. Establishing this sort of organization will also be a selling point for any company, as consumers are likely to approach exchanges with higher quality customer service over those with little or none.
There exists plenty of customer management software on the market today such as “Complaints Software,” “Metric Stream” and “Customer Expressions,” that can be purchased and downloaded to track complaints. But if an organization chooses to start with a simple spreadsheet and database, administrators can define categories and establish processes for this type of customer service themselves.
What Should You Be Recording?
Tracking should involve recording basic customer information like name(s), date(s) and time(s), the method of communication, the nature of the complaint, a review and analysis or the case, recommendations for policy/procedure changes (if necessary), and a place for additional notes to be attributed to a specific case or ticket.
Developing a database of consumer complaints and issues would ultimately provide a company the ability to enhance the training of its customer service representatives and healthy interaction with its customers. It would also enable a company to implement auditing practices to analyze how it is mitigating and responding to consumer issues – a quality that would legitimize big players in the industry among both financial regulators and potential traders.
Without getting too technical, if you glean one takeaway, I hope it’s this: I advocate detailed tracking and documenting of customer complaints and misunderstandings. This doesn’t have to be an elaborate system or software package; it can begin with something as simple as a spreadsheet.
To put such standards in place would bolster the quality of doing business within the cryptocurrency space, and ultimately legitimize and normalize the entire industry – and especially to those regulators that remain skeptical about the nature of blockchain currency.