Beginner’s Guide: Binance Complete Review

Beginner’s Guide / 17.12.2018
Binance is one of the most popular cryptocurrency exchanges and the largest exchange by volumes. It started in China in 2017, but recently moved their headquarters to the crypto-friendly Island of Malta in the EU. Binance has gained crypto enthusiasts’ attention for its crypto to crypto exchange services, impressive number of ICOs (Initial Coin Offering listings), professional attitude and friendly CEO as well as its low trading fees.

How the Exchange Works

Those who visit Binance for the first time will quickly notice that the platform offers two options for digital currency trading: basic and advanced. Neither the basic, nor the advanced versions are bound to be easy to use for complete beginners. However, they are pretty intuitive and anyone with a background in digital currencies or knowledge into how exchanges work should be able to use the platform and its different services.

The main difference between the basic and the advanced version is that the advanced one offers more-in-depth technical analysis of digital currency value over time. The dashboard for the basic version offers several graphs and charts for the pairs that you’re trading, order books, and trade history.

This is what the basic view looks like :

The Basic view is nicely designed and well laid out, all the information you need is clearly presented with prices on the left, graphs in the center along with the buy and sell boxes and the trade history is presented on the right so you can quickly see what the latest trade prices were. The advanced view uses a dark theme and makes the trading charts larger and the latest trade prices are displayed on the right with the buy sell boxes underneath.

This is what the advanced view looks like:

Binance officially added margin trading for its customers in late May 2019, with up to 20x leverage soon after.

This is what the margin trading view looks like:

Binance Signup & Login

To use the exchange, users will first have to create an account. The process behind this is fairly simple and straight-forward and you don’t have to necessarily verify your account for level 1 which is limited to 2 BTC daily withdrawal. For level 2, which allows up to 100 BTC per day, you need to upload a photo ID and a selfie photo holding your ID and wait for the approval process. For even higher limits, you will need to contact them directly to arrange that.

Time for verification can vary depending on how busy the site support staff are; mine took less than 24h for instance, but make sure to plan ahead should you wish to withdraw larger amounts and make sure this step is complete before depositing and trading large sums on the exchange.

Once you have registered (and completed the optional verification process), you can go ahead and fund your Binance account, by choosing from a multitude of digital currencies. To fund your account visit the “Funds” > “Deposits / Withdrawals” link at the top of the site and find the currency you wish to send, then click the “Deposit” button next to it which will then you give you the wallet address. You can then send your funds to this address to begin trading on the platform, depending on which currency you deposit it will take different times to show up as this is reliant on that currencies blockchain. Some currencies like Stellar are faster than Bitcoin which can take a while.

Binance Exchange can be used to generate limit, market and stop-limit orders for more advanced traders. Following the placement of your order, simply wait for it to be fulfilled according to the terms that have been set.

How to Trade on Binance

Trading on Binance is fairly simple and intuitive, especially if you have used any other cryptocurrency exchange before. To get started, make sure you have deposited some funds – there are multiple options for trading pairs in BTC, ETH, BNB, USDT, USDS, USDC, PAX and recently they added XRP too. Once you have your funds, at the top right menu, select “Exchange” > “Basic” or “Advanced” to load the trading screen. We will be using the Basic view. Watch out for Margin Trading unless you are an expert! It is highly risking and can lead to money loss.

On the right hand side of the screen, select a tab from BTC, ETH, BNB, USDT, USDS, USDC or PAX which we’ll be your base trading pair and this is what you will be trading in. Then choose your desired currency from the list. You can also use the search and even create a favorites list by clicking the star next to any currencies (1 in the picture below).

Once your desired currency has loaded, take note of the left-hand column which shows prices that people are willing to sell at in the top half in red and prices people are willing to buy at in green in the bottom half. The number in the middle shows the last sale price (2 in the picture below).

On the right hand side of the screen, select a tab from BTC, ETH, BNB, XRP, USDT, USDS, USDC or PAX which we’ll be your base trading pair and this is what you will be trading in. Then choose your desired currency from the list. You can also use the search and even create a favorites list by clicking the star next to any currencies (1 in the picture below).

Once your desired currency has loaded, take note of the left-hand column which shows prices that people are willing to sell at in the top half in red and prices people are willing to buy at in green in the bottom half. The number in the middle shows the last sale price (2 in the picture below).

Once your order is placed it will be show underneath in the “Open Orders” section until it is filled. At that point your new currency will be available under the “Deposits / Withdrawals” menu where you can withdraw it to the wallet of your choice.

Supported Cryptocurrencies

Binance has often been praised for its wide variety of support coins. Traders can use the platform for multiple digital currencies, including, but not limited to Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Bitcoin Gold, Ethereum, Ethereum Classic, EOS, Dash, LiteCoin, NEO, GAS, Zcash, Dash, Ripple and more. As mentioned before, Binance supports numerous tokens, as part of ICO listings. With this in mind, traders can use the platform to trade these tokens for a profit as well. Binance is very quick in adding new coins and tokens after their ICO which usually means you can purchase them cheaply which allows for greater profit down the road.

Binance ICO & BNB Coin

It’s worth mentioning that Binance issued during their own ICO, Binance Coin or BNB. The Binance coin can be used to pay fees and it will also feature in their future plans to create a Decentralized Exchange where it will form one of the key base currencies. Purchasing the Binance coin itself seems to be a viewed as a good investment for the future also because the exchange uses its profits to buy back a portion of the coins every quarter and burn them: hence decreasing the supply and making them more valuable for holders.

Every quarter, we will use 20% of our profits to buy back BNB and destroy them, until we buy 50% of all the BNB (100MM) back. All buy-back transactions will be announced on the blockchain. We eventually will destroy 100MM BNB, leaving 100MM BNB remaining

Binance Fees & Limits

At the time of writing, Binance charges an average fee of 0.1% on each trade that a user makes. Those who choose to pay via the Binance token can get a 25% discount on the trading fee, which is absolutely great news. These are surely some of the lowest fees available at this time. Withdrawal fees tend to vary for each digital currency. For instance, 0.0005 is charged for Bitcoin withdrawals, and 0.01 is charged for ETH withdrawals.

When it comes down to transfer limits, there is no limit on the number of coins that you can deposit. However, without getting verified, users are limited in terms of how much they can withdraw. Verification will establish you as a level two users, thus lifting these limits and providing a lot more freedom when using the platform. The verification process requires users to provide Binance with their full name, country, gender, a photo of passport/government-issued ID, and even a selfie with the ID document provided.

Binance Competitions

An amazing feature of Binance you will notice is that they regularly hold competitions with some pretty neat prizes. Their competitions are displayed on the home page and usually the winners are the people with the highest trading volume of that particular currency for which they started the competition.

Is Binance Safe?

While Binance is one of the newest cryptocurrency exchanges available on the market, it has quickly managed to attain a high level of trust from its users and the digital currency community which implies that at Binance security is taken seriously. Two-factor authentication is available and is always a nice sight. It is however known that the platform offers a multi-tier and multi-tier system architecture.

In March 2018 Binance suffered a hacking attempt.

The hackers tried to pull off an audacious move which was luckily caught by the automated systems in place at the exchange. For months the hackers had been accumulating people’s logins via a phishing website and secretly installing API access on the affected accounts. They then struck, converting all the victims altcoins to BTC and purchasing Viacoin, pumping the coin to a huge price and then selling their own supply of Viacoin at the high point, before trying to withdraw the BTC to their own wallets. Luckily no one lost funds as the hack was caught and the only people to lose out were the hackers, whose funds will be donated to charity.

As this hack was made possible by people entering their site logins and 2FA details into a fake website, you should always make sure you are on the correct Binance URL before logging in. We recommend you bookmark the site and only use that to access it, never click links from emails, Twitter, Telegram etc.

This event has done a lot to instill confidence around Binance, not only did their automated processes catch the attempted hack before anyone lost any funds, they have since offered a $250,000 bounty to anyone who can help catch the hackers. Throughout this event, Binance acted exemplary and have been praised for their swift action in resolving this.

In May 2019 Hackers Steal $40 Million Worth of Bitcoin From Binance Exchange – Bloomberg

The hackers used a “variety of techniques” including phishing and viruses to obtain a large amount of user data, Binance said in a post on its website. There may be additional accounts that have been affected but not yet identified, Binance said. The largest digital tokens including Bitcoin slid about 3 percent after the disclosure, then recovered most of the drop.

The company will use its Secure Asset Fund for Users, an emergency insurance fund, to cover the incident in full and no user funds will be affected, it said.

Binance KYC Breach – Cointelegraph

On Aug. 7, Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange (by daily trade volume), fell victim to a hacking scandal that saw the miscreant allegedly gain possession of a huge chunk of the firm’s Know Your Customer (KYC) data (10,000+ personal photos). The hacker is reportedly demanding a total of 300 Bitcoins (worth around $3.5 million) from the exchange, or else he or she will release all of the data.

The $40mn Binance Hack

An article by Business Insider Noted that, while it is uncommon to see an established exchange like Binance get hacked, the cybercriminals managed not only to steal 7,000 bitcoin but also two-factor authentication codes and API tokens. Binance also revealed that the hackers were able to compromise “very high net-worth accounts”.

Binance Customer Support

An exchange to be successful, it requires a great customer support team, capable of answering all user questions and requests in a timely manner. While the support area on Binance could use a little work, the team is responsive and capable of offering professional aid to traders in need. Support tickets are submitted via an online form featured on the website, and responses are made via email. There is currently no live chat support, nor a phone number where customers can get in touch with the support team. You can also use the search option to browse their pretty rich Knowledge Base with answers to many of users’ questions.

It should be noted that customer support on Binance has been known to be slow to respond to customer requests. This is a familiar phenomenon with most of large exchanges and is due simply to the volume of users and amount of support staff. The exchanges have grown at an explosive rate this past year and the companies simply haven’t been able to keep up with demand. Binance grew fast especially, going from launch to the largest exchange on the planet in a few short months. Support staff for exchanges have to be carefully vetted and trained due to the technicalities and security requirements involved – unlike other traditional companies where staff can be trained quicker.

Some things to bare in mind are double-checking wallet addresses, make sure you are sending the correct cryptocurrency to it’s corresponding address on the site. Mix-ups with wallets are one of the biggest mistakes people make when using exchanges. Other things to note are, try a smaller test payment first if you plan to transfer large sums – it may cost you a little more in fees but will be worth it for peace of mind. If you do need to contact support, make sure you provide them with enough information to be able to help you first time. Include wallet addresses, times of transactions and any other information you think they might need to help speed up the process.

Moving to Malta

In March 2018, Japanese Newspaper Nikkei reported that Binance was trading in Japan and not following their official regulations. This caused some turbulence in the markets until Binance made an official announcement that they were going to be moving operations to the crypto-friendly island of Malta in Europe, stating :

After reviewing several different locations, the company decided to invest in the European nation due to its existing pro-blockchain legislation and the stability that it offers financial technology companies through its regulatory framework.

This is good news for the company and they even received a warm welcome from the Prime Minister of Malta on Twitter. Binance also announced that they were in talks with Maltese banks with the goal of providing Fiat transactions, meaning they can offer an on-ramp for fiat to crypto transactions in future along with fiat trading pairs on the exchange.

More good news for Binance, it seems as their profile and reputation within the industry continues to grow.

Decentralized Exchange

More recent news for Binance and what seems like good news to BNB holders is the launch of Binance DEX.

Launching a Decentralized Stock Exchange

Binance has also partnered up with Neufund to build the world’s first Decentralized Stock Exchange. Alongside the Malta Stock Exchange, they are aiming to create a regulated and decentralized, global stock exchange for listing and trading tokenized securities alongside crypto-assets.

According to CapLinked, the market cap of equity tokens alone is projected to reach $1 trillion by 2020 and thanks to the partnership with MSX, a subsidiary of the Malta Stock Exchange and Binance, Neufund will become the first end-to-end primary issuance platform for security tokens, in particular, equity tokens. It will secure ways for secondary trading of equity tokens and enable companies around the world to fundraise on Blockchain in a legal way while offering much-needed liquidity.

This is more positive news for Binance as they aim to consolidate their position as the world’s number one Crypto Exchange.

Binance Charity Foundation

Binance launched its blockchain-based donation portal, Blockchain Charity Foundation (BCF), at the UNCTAD World Investment Forum this year. While the platform aims to bring transparency to a number of charitable organizations, the BCF platform will specifically advance the progress of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

If you look at the first few UN Sustainable Development Goals, such as poverty, hunger, health and even education, these are easily addressed or improved by the charity initiatives. Yet, what we’re trying to do is a level deeper. I believe that by improving transparency in the charity sector, we will be able address all 17 goals as a whole, at a more fundamental layer, said Binance CEO, Changpeng Zhao (CZ).”

One of the key benefits provided by blockchain technology is transparency, which is also one of the greatest challenges faced by charities today.

Moreover, Binance is no longer cashing-in the listing fees, instead all projects who decide to pay a listing fee anyway, is donated directly to Binance Charity Foundation.

Binance Jersey

Binance’s cryptocurrency exchange platform has expanded into the European market with its entry into the Island of Jersey, a self-governing dependency of Great Britain. Binance Jersey will allow trading of popular cryptocurrencies bitcoin (BTC) and ether (ETH) against the euro (EUR) and the British pound (GBP).

The exchange will launch with four trading pairs, including BTC/GBP, ETH/GBP, BTC/EUR and ETH/EUR.

In a statement, Wei Zhou, Binance’s chief financial officer, called the island “an undisputed pioneer in blockchain development leveraged by this strong framework and talent pool.” He added: “Binance Jersey hopes to increase Jersey’s competitive advantage in banking from other jurisdictions competing for cryptocurrency-related business as the island’s cryptocurrency regulation allows.”

Binance and Digital Jersey first partnered in June 2018, with both companies signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) such that Binance could “develop a compliance base and cryptocurrency exchange in Jersey.” The partnership was also meant to help Binance develop a better understanding of the regulatory and economic environment of Jersey Island, particularly with compliance with anti-money laundering and know-your-customer (KYC) laws.

Binance US

Launched in September 2019, Binance.US is powered by matching engine and wallet technologies licensed from Binance. Operated by BAM Trading Services and based in San Francisco, California, Binance.US aims to provide a fast, secure and reliable platform to buy and sell cryptocurrencies in the United States. It also supports USD fiat pairs.

Conclusion

Currently, the matching engine of the exchange is capable of processing approximately 1.4 million orders each second, hence making it one of the fastest exchanges available on the market. Additionally, the exchange works on all forms of devices, including web, iOS, Android, WeChat, and HTML5. Non-English speakers will be happy to know that Binance offers multiple-language support in Chinese, English, Korean and Japanese.

Binance is undoubtedly the leading Cryptocurrency Exchange which offers great fees and awesome digital currency support. As it reportedly has access to abundant resources and partners, chances are that Binance will continue to evolve and offer great digital currency exchange services to its clients.

As always, don’t forget to take safety precautions such as using a unique password for signing up, switch on 2-factor authentication and remember to withdraw your currencies to your own private wallet.

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Born in Bucharest, Marius is the founder of Crypto Adventure. Since his first contact with Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies, he never stopped believing that they are one of the most important innovations of our time, which will forever change the way business is done.