Homeland Security inks deal with Coinbase for its blockchain analytics software

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The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has signed a deal with Coinbase to use its blockchain tracing software, Coinbase Analytics.

The current deal value is $455,000 for one year, but it can go up to a total amount of $1.4 million through 2024, according to government tracker USAspending.gov.

If extended through 2024, this will be the largest government contract for Coinbase Analytics, according to tracker Tech Inquiry. The previous agreements have had maximum ceilings between $29,000 and $695,000.

As for the latest deal, Homeland Security's Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency, specifically, awarded the contract. The agency did not detail the terms of the deal but said Coinbase's software will help support Homeland Security's cyber crimes center. Coinbase "is the only vendor who can provide the licenses required by the agency," it said.

The Coinbase Analytics platform arose from the company's controversial acquisition of Neutrino, which, as previously reported, was founded by members of the Italian spyware company Hacking Team. Last year, Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong said the company wants to recoup costs and build relationships with law enforcement and hence decided to sell its analytics software to government agencies. At the time, the company stressed that "the information offered in Coinbase Analytics has always been kept completely separate from Coinbase internal data."

Other government agencies that have awarded contracts to Coinbase include the Secret Service, the Internal Revenue Service, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

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