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Parviz Malakouti-Fitzgerald, Esq.

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  • Writer's pictureParviz Malakouti-Fitzgerald, Esq.

Palau Digital Residency ID - To Open a Crypto Account on River Exchange? (Field Report #12)

Updated: Feb 1

This article is part of our series exploring what exactly the Palau digital residency ID can be used for.

I made my twelfth attempt to use the Palau digital residency ID (“the ID”) on the week of January 1st, 2024. 

I tried to use the Palau ID to open a cryptocurrency exchange account on River. 

Result: Successful. 

Explanation: One of the uses Palau has touted about its digital residency ID is the ability to open crypto exchange accounts and use the ID for verification for KYC/AML purposes. In this experiment, I opened an account on River, which does not require ID verification. However, upon attempting to send crypto from my River account, I was prompted to verify my ID. 

River has you do this by presenting a QR code that you open with your cell phone camera. Then I was asked to take a picture of the following: 

  • the front and back of a valid government issued photo ID

  • A “selfie” style photo of myself. 

I submitted a picture of my Palau digital residency ID and my selfie photo. I was emailed a message stating “ID Verification Submitted.” 

Two days later, I received an email stating: “[River] Action Required: Photo ID Verification Failed” 

I emailed back saying that I submitted the verification ID (my Palau ID) again and asking for an update. Two days later, I received the following email that I now have the ability to send Bitcoin (i.e. that my ID verification document that was approved). 

I went to my river account and manually confirmed that I’m able to send bitcoin. The whole process took three days. Success.

I’ll continue trying to use the ID, and report the results here on Malakouti Law

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