LocalEthereum, which is one of the main competitors of peer-to-peer trading network LocalBitcoins, has changed its name to LocalCryptos and has begun supporting Bitcoin (BTC) trades.
Previously LocalBitcoins had been the king of peer-to-peer trading platforms, but in an effort to satisfy Finnish regulators, LocalBitcoins is now forcing customers to submit ID before they are allowed to trade and has removed the local cash option. The local cash option was perhaps the most popular payment method since it allowed traders to meet face to face and exchange cash for Bitcoin (BTC).
Essentially, LocalBitcoins has been neutered due to regulation, and LocalCryptos is aiming to take over the market that LocalBitcoins previously controlled.
One of the main benefits of LocalCryptos is that it is non-custodial, meaning that users have sole control over their private keys. This is much different from LocalBitcoins, which even before the regulatory crackdown was custodial, leaving users at a higher risk of losing their coins.
Also, LocalCryptos has a decentralized escrow mechanism once a trade is initiated, and only if a dispute arises does a centralized arbitrator get involved. Perhaps most importantly, LocalCryptos allows users to be anonymous, and all private messaging is encrypted.
Finally, LocalCryptos is making it easy for LocalBitcoins traders to transition to their site by allowing users to import their LocalBitcoins reputation.
All of this being said, peer-to-peer cryptocurrency trading is still illegal in many jurisdictions. In the United States, a money transmitter license is required to do any significant trading, and know your customer (KYC) and anti-money laundering (AML) protocols are required by law even if LocalCryptos does not demand such information.