Exchange News

BitForex Crypto Exchange Halts Withdrawals and User Support

A Hong Kong-based cryptocurrency exchange has suspended withdrawals for at least three days without prior notice, leaving users in the dark and sparking concerns across the crypto community.

The Hong Kong-headquartered BitForex exchange halted its withdrawal services for an unspecified reason, following an approximate $56 million digital currency outflow from the exchange’s wallets. On February 23, blockchain investigator ZachXBT highlighted that three hot wallets belonging to BitForex had seen about $56.5 million in crypto outflows before the transaction processing pause. The exchange’s X account has not been updated since May 2023, and BitForex users on their official Telegram channel report varying account issues, from being unable to access their accounts to missing assets on their dashboards. Several users shared screenshots indicating they were blocked from accessing the company’s website.

Attempts by CoinTelegraph to access the BitForex website encountered similar issues, although some specific pages of the exchange’s website are still active. For instance, a January 31 announcement about BitForex CEO Jason Luo’s departure from the company was still live at the time of writing. In September 2023, BitForex was among the leading cryptocurrency exchanges in terms of capital, with a daily trading volume of around $2.6 billion in digital currencies. Currently, CoinMarketCap no longer provides live data for BitForex.

In April 2023, the Japanese Financial Services Agency (FSA) accused BitForex of violating the country’s settlement laws, alleging the exchange operated without proper registration in Japan. Since then, BitForex has not attracted significant attention from regulators or media. Last week, another Hong Kong exchange, Atom Asset Exchange (AAX), withdrew approximately $55.6 million in Ether from its wallet. AAX ceased all operations on November 13, 2022, just two days after FTX declared bankruptcy. Following the shutdown, former AAX CEO Thor Chan and board member Haoming Liang were arrested by Hong Kong police in 2022. However, the identity of AAX’s founder, reportedly still at large with HK$230 million ($29.41 million), remains undisclosed.

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