With each passing day, the threat of the COVID-19 virus, the coronavirus, causes new events related to travel disruptions and social situations in Asia. Thus, cryptocurrencies and traditional markets are also affected. Bitcoin lost 3% due to the outbreak of the virus in Italy. Cryptocurrency exchanges are also preparing for worse scenarios as the spread of the virus becomes worse.
According to a document publicly shared by CEO Brian Armstrong, Coinbase is preparing for a four-tier upgrade to COVID-19. Each phase of the plan will be processed based on quarantines or the number of people affected.
Phase 1 will be processed when the number of people affected exceeds 100, according to the statement. Coinbase's plan includes small measures such as increasing the frequency of cleaning its offices and “limiting office visitors to basic staff only.” In addition, employees are offered the option to work from home.
Phase two will be implemented when there are 1,000 cases, similar to Phase 1, or when a form of government-imposed quarantine applies. Coinbase's measure includes preventing all visitors from entering offices and terminating meals given in offices.
The third stage, on the other hand, comes with a disclaimer: “a challenging process will begin if the enclosure fails.”For example, Coinbase employees will have to work from home, and third-party services leveraged for cleaning and food in offices will likely not be available indefinitely. So in fact the offices will be closed.
The crypto exchange has offices in the US, Japan, Ireland and the United Kingdom. A Phase 1 measures are currently being used for offices in Japan.
At the time of the document's release, Coinbase restricted business travel to China, Hong Kong, Italy, Japan and South Korea for its employees. Despite these measures, Armstrong states that the measures are kept at the Phase 1 level because “the risk of covid-2019 coronavirus for most employees is low.”