BEIJING (BLOOMBERG) – Chinese police have launched an investigation linked to cryptocurrency exchange giant OKEx, forcing one of the world’s largest Bitcoin trading platforms to block users globally from withdrawing money.
An unidentified staffer responsible for users’ private keys – accounts where they store crypto assets – has been “out of touch” as the person cooperates with a police investigation, the Malta-based exchange said in a statement on Friday (Oct 16). As a result, the company has halted all cryptocurrency withdrawals, without saying when they will resume.
Bitcoin fell 2.9 per cent to around US$11,216 on Friday before recouping some of those losses.
OKEx, founded by tech entrepreneur Star Xu, is one of the most active cryptocurrency spot and derivatives trading platforms, alongside the likes of Binance and Huobi. Originally from China, the start-up moved its base to Malta after Beijing started to crack down on crypto trading.
“In order to act in the best interests of customers and deliver exceptional longtime customer service, we have decided to suspend digital assets/cryptocurrencies withdrawals as of October 16, 2020 at 11:00 (Hong Kong Time). We assure that OKEx’s other functions remain normal and stable and the security of your assets at OKEx will not affected,” it said in an English statement.
A representative for OKEx didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.
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