Crypto exchange Bitfinex has issued its Ontario-based clients, a March 1 ultimatum to take out all their funds. According to the Friday announcement, these customers will no longer have access to the exchange’s services from the said date.
Bitfinex Leaves Customers Guessing, Begins Accounts Closure
So far, Bitfinex has left customers guessing as regards what could have warranted this announcement. And despite issuing an ultimatum, the crypto platform has shared absolutely no reason for this step.
Meanwhile, sources claim that the move is as a result of the crackdown of the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC), on crypto exchanges operating in the area. The region’s financial watchdog has dealt with exchanges including Bybit, OKEx, Polo Digital Assets, and KuCoin.
Interestingly however, the OSC is yet to claim having any parts in Bitfinex’s decision. Bitfinex itself has also not come out with any official details on the matter.
The announcement by Bitfinex noted that closure of accounts will be starting from today January 15, 2022.
Firstly, customers without zero balances will have their accounts closed down immediately. This simply implies that any customers without open positions on the peer-to-peer financing markets of the exchange, will lose access to those markets. Additionally, consumers without open margin positions will no longer have access to margin or borrowing.
But the rest who still have funds locked up in their account balances should start withdrawing before the curtain closes.
Not New To Regulatory Orders
Bitfinex has also had to face the wrath of U.S. regulators in the past though. In October 2021, the CFTC fined the crypto exchange and its sister company Tether $42.5 million. Bitfinex was accused of illegal digital assets transactions. And while the two firms were asked by The Office of the New York Attorney General to periodically report their reserves, they have since been ordered to pay $18.5 million in damages.