Last week two organizations announced bitcoin certifications aimed at separating the Bitcoin enthusiasts from the professionals. Both groups are backed by big names in the space and offer competitive packages. In Canada, The CryptoCurrency Certification Consortium (C4) offers what it calls “Professional” and “Expert” level certification. In the US, The Digital Currency Council (DCC) is offering one certification “reserved for professionals who have mastered digital currencies.”
The CryptoCurrency Certification Consortium
C4’s Board of Directors includes Ethereum inventor Vitalik Buterin. Ethereum is a next generation cryptocurrency with advanced programmability and customization. He is a contributor to Bitcoin core, editor of Bitcoin Magazine and has spoken internationally on Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Information Theory.
The C4 Certified Bitcoin Professional (CBP) test is available in English. Certified Professionals can apply Bitcoin to their professional settings and understand the risks and benefits entailed. The certification lasts for two years, costs $24.99 to apply. The examination fee costs $49.99 bringing your professional C4 certification to a total just shy of $75. After two years renewal will cost $24.99. Professional level certification is recommended to Accountants and Controllers, Sales & Marketing professionals, Educators, Entrepreneurs, IT professionals, Call Center Representatives, Project Managers, and just in case you don’t fit into any of those categories, anyone who uses Bitcoin in their daily lives.
The CBP exam covers 32 topics, starting with History of Money and Ledger-based Economies, Basic Cryptography, Bitcoin Basics, Mining, Wallets, Clients and Key Management, and Bitcoin Commerce. A C4 Certified Bitcoin Expert (CBXe) includes all the knowledge of the CBP and branches to advanced cryptography, Bitcoin Core, Bitcoin API, Advanced Blockchain details, Economics Aspects of Bitcoin, and Security.
The Digital Currency Consortium
David Berger leads The Digital Currency Consortium. Prior to joining DCC David was CEO Americas for Campden Wealth, the parent company of the Institute for Private Investors – a support network for ultra-high net worth investors. DCC is backed by the Bitcoin Opportunity Corp (BOC). Founded by Barry Silbert, the BOC supports over 30 different Bitcoin startups including Coinbase, Ripple, XAPO, Circle, and Kraken. On their site, the DCC claims their certifications are equipping financial professionals, attorneys, and accountants with the information they need to support their Bitcoin customers.
After signing up DCC offers four packages: Explorer, Professional, Leader, and Innovator. Prices range from free (Explorer) to $99 per month. Unlike C4, DCC is using a subscription based services to attract professionals. According to DCC’s descriptions, you won’t be able to test for certification unless you are subscribed to the Leader package – $79 a month. Users with Professional accounts will have access to training materials but as it appears now, only the Leader & Innovator level subscriptions will be eligible to register for certification.
Membership levels each display various perks – early access projects, events, knowledge, and branding on the DCC website. However, the author was able to find more details on the site with only a free membership. The DCC website also shows a “Hire a DCC Certified Professional” link but requires at least an Explorer (free) membership to view. The resulting page is a request form and a promise the DCC will share your request with members they believe have the expertise to meet your needs.
Both organizations made their announcements this week. Feedback from the community has been sparse. It’s currently unknown how many certified professionals exist. However, it is being reported that Bitcoin Core developer Peter Todd (and advisor to C4) had this to say about C4’s professional level certification,
“I thought it was a very reasonable test of Bitcoin knowledge appropriate for the level of a Bitcoin Professional. I’m looking forward to the more[sic] in-depth Bitcoin Expert certification. The knowledge is so new that until now we didn’t have any way to measure it and that has created questions and doubts regarding security,”
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