Inclusion Times reported earlier this week that Tesla invested $1.5 billion into bitcoin – a huge win for people and organizations holding the cryptocurrency, especially when the price of the cryptocurrency reached an all-time high of $48,000. As if this is not enough of a sign that cryptocurrency is here to stay, Mastercard said on Wednesday it will integrate cryptocurrencies into its network later this year.
The company though, already offers cryptocurrency cards. However these are done in partnership with vendors who change a cryptocurrency into traditional currency, and then use the traditional currency to transact. This is different from Mastercard integrating a cryptocurrency onto its network, which means direct payment with that crypto, and should be quicker and faster.
Raj Dhamodharan, Mastercard’s head of digital asset products, wrote in a blog post that; “Whatever your opinion on cryptocurrencies – from a dyed-in-wool fanatic to utter skeptic – the fact remains that these digital assets are becoming a more important part of the payments world… Mastercard isn’t here to recommend you start using cryptocurrencies. But we are here to enable customers, merchants, and businesses to move digital value – traditional or crypto – however they want.”
According to Dhamodharan, Mastercard will accept only a select few of cryptocurrencies, one that meets certain privacy, security, legal and efficiency standards. What this means is an overwhelming majority of altcoins won’t be accepted.
This move by Mastercard follows PayPal, which announced last October a platform on which cryptocurrency can be bought, sold, and used as payment.