This is my long-overdue Luno Malaysia review after being a long-time user.
Let’s start this article with this little tidbit of information:
Before Luno Malaysia, they were called.. BitX
I’ve signed up with Luno since December 2015, back when they were still known as BitX. They only rebranded into the Luno that you know in 2017. I’m not sharing this info to be ter-paling crypto early adopter (I know people who were earlier!). More to prove that I’ve been using their services for a long time.
In this Luno Malaysia review, I’m going to cover Luno Malaysia platform ONLY. For other questions like what other crypto exchanges are available in Malaysia and is bitcoin halal and what’s the difference between Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash, please head over to The ULTIMATE Cryptocurrency in Malaysia Guide [2022 Update] article – I’ve already covered it there.
Luno Malaysia Review: Features You Should Know
In all my years of using the platform, I can say there are 4 areas where Luno Malaysia excels in:
- User interface (the UI/UX) – very easy to use, foolproof even. Trading knowledge useful but not required. Great security features
- Can set up repeat buy – You can set up crypto purchase monthly, weekly or even daily, from RM1. A great set-and-forget, sikit-sikit lama-lama jadi bukit strategy (the fancy term for this investment strategy is DCA – dollar cost averaging)
- Bonus for new users – New users can get RM50 in BTC on minimum RM500 deposit (instant 10% ROI) with my code ‘LNSURAYA50′. Simply open a new account at Luno.com > Go to REWARDS > Choose ENTER CODE > Enter the given promo code > Click Apply Code > Deposit the minimum amount required > Buy the minimum transaction amount > Get rewarded with the additional Bitcoin.
I want to expand on that last part.
Can you trust Luno Malaysia?
I personally have a lot of trust in Luno Malaysia.
Two reasons why I say that – One, Luno Malaysia is registered with Securities Commission Malaysia and regulated under the Digital Assets Guideline, issued on 28 October 2020. In fact the initial batch of approved crypto exchanges in Malaysia – Luno, SINEGY and Tokenize – have my biggest respect. It’s not too far-fetched to say that without their perseverance in getting licenced, crypto wouldn’t be this mainstream.
Second is my own personal experience with the team. I don’t know what they do to promote such a community-focused culture in the organisation, but it’s great. Even from the early days, my interactions with Luno employees have been nothing but positive. I even provided some work in an informal capacity (wrote some articles) and at one time interacted directly with co-founder and CEO of Luno, Marcus Swanepoel and he was super nice and respectful.
And the positive interactions continued on even now. The Luno Malaysia team reaches out from time to time to offer updates, benefits, support and learning opportunities. As of the time of writing, they are conducting free webinars aimed to increase women’s participation in crypto.
However, please note that trustworthiness doesn’t mean ‘confirm won’t lose money‘. That brings me to:
Luno Malaysia review: Common complaints
Common complaint #1 – Losing money
Luno Malaysia the company is regulated but (1) the value of your bitcoin will still go down during bear market, and (2) you can still get scammed and lose your crypto. It’s the same idea as using banks – if you accidentally transferred funds to a scammer, or if your account got hacked, the bank is not responsible for the loss.
There is no 100% guarantee way to prevent losses, but you can significantly reduce the chances by:
- Implementing 2-factor authentication
- Implementing Biometric login
- Using strong passwords for your Luno login AND email address
- Using hardware wallet if you have a significant amount
You can read more about digital security and other security measures in the The ULTIMATE Cryptocurrency in Malaysia Guide [2022 Update] article. You can also refer to Luno Blog section on Security for more tips.
Common complaint #2 – Not enough cryptocurrency options
Currently, the platform only offers BTC, ETH, LTC, XRP and BCH – a far cry from the hundreds/thousands of crypto assets options offered from popular (but unregulated) exchanges like Binance and KuCoin. Aaron Tang, Country Manager of Luno Malaysia (you may also know him as mr-stingy.com) has said that the number one customer request is more crypto assets.
Even though Aaron has assured that more coins will be offered later in 2022, it is unlikely that they will add more than 10 additional crypto assets. It is also unlikely for your favourite dog coin will be approved by Securities Commission and listed in Luno.
This is not a bad thing.
Rather than lack of options, think of it as Securities Commission doing the work to ‘vouch’ cryptocurrencies on our behalf. When they approve a crypto asset, they’re basically saying ok this one safe, not scam.
Plus, once you get BTC, it’s not hard to exchange that to whatever crypto asset you want – it’s just a matter of learning how. So not having options in local exchanges is not that big of an issue tbh.
Personally, I choose to concentrate on mostly hodling BTC and ETH myself because they’re the safest options. For a longer version of that argument, read more in the Which Cryptocurrencies to Invest In? 3 Ways I Use to Decide article.
Common complaint #3 – No staking or farming options
Sometimes I see people asking when Luno Malaysia will offer staking or farming options. They are both terms used in DeFi, or Decentralised Finance. In case you don’t know what it is:
- Staking is kinda sorta like fixed deposit where you earn by ‘locking’ your cryptocurrencies in exchange for profit
- Yield-farming is kinda sorta like earning from being a liquidity provider (a fancy term that basically means, you supply money for borrowers)
Now, two points that I want to make:
- First, Luno is a CENTRALISED company and regulated. Staking and farming are part of DeFi, which is DECENTRALISED finance and unregulated by nature. Therefore, Luno CANNOT offer staking or farming. It’s just fundamentally incompatible
- Second, *if* they do want to offer similar-but-not-quite-the-same-type of services, they’ll have to call it ‘crypto savings account’ or ‘interest-bearing account’ (instead of staking) and ‘lending platform’ (instead of yield-farming) or something
Hope that settles it.
Final say: Don’t take regulated exchanges for granted
Perhaps some of you read this article wanting to know why you should use Luno or other regulated exchanges when unregulated ones offer more services and crypto assets. Just one reason: your safety.
I wish more people know how scary it was to invest in cryptocurrencies in the early days. It was very common to lose money. I’m oversimplifying, but it went more or less like this:
- Circa 2015-2017: Many exchangers and p2p platforms allowed Malaysians to buy and sell crypto, but not all of them are great with due diligence or security. A lot of people lost money when the exchanges got hacked or when they got scammed
- Circa 2018-2019: It got so bad that many local banks were not willing to work with crypto exchanges, making customer deposit/withdrawal difficult. Regulatory body Securities Commission started on the Digital Assets framework, aimed to increase customer protection
- Circa 2020 – now: About a dozen crypto exchanges applied for the licence but only some (including Luno) successfully met SC’s stringent requirements. Now, Malaysians can easily own (selected) digital assets
What I’m saying is, being a licensed exchange is a hard-won battle and the extra few ringgit paid is well worth your own security and protection, especially if you’re new to crypto. When you gain more experience and knowledge, then you can go nuts and explore the wild wild west side of it.
Last but not least, don’t forget to get that Bonus for new users. New users can get RM50 in BTC on minimum RM500 deposit (instant 10% ROI) with my code ‘LNSURAYA50′. Simply open a new account at Luno.com > Go to REWARDS > Choose ENTER CODE > Enter the given promo code > Click Apply Code > Deposit the minimum amount required > Buy the minimum transaction amount > Get rewarded with the additional Bitcoin.