Binance Holdings Ltd, one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges by volume, has restricted personal accounts of 281 Nigerian users in accordance with anti-money laundering regulations by the Central Bank of Nigeria to ensure the security of the platform for traders which has lead to many Nigerians complaining.
Sequel to allegations levied against Binance by its Nigerian users, Binance’s CEO , Changpeng Zhao, in his letter,“Our commitment to User Protection.” addresses its Nigerian users.
Zhao said, “Protection mechanisms such as know your customer, anti-money laundering measures, collaboration with law enforcement and account restrictions are in place to ensure our community remains protected,’ the crypto exchange said in a statement on its website.
“Some 281 Nigerian accounts have been affected by these personal account restrictions, with approximately 38% of these cases restricted at the request of international law enforcement,”
Many users of the Binance global exchange on social media have complained, accusing the exchange of blocking accounts for weeks and months without any feedback or reason from the exchange making it the third trending topic on Twitter with over 25,000 tweets on Wednesday. On Thursday, it was also among the top 5 with over 10,000 tweets, going with the hashtag, #BinanceStopScamming.
However, Binance has resolved 79 of the account restriction cases and plans to deploy more customer service personnel and risk agents to quicken the resolution process, it said. “All non-law enforcement-related cases will be resolved within two weeks,” it said.
Nigerians continue to use virtual currencies to hedge against inflation and naira slide, as well as to remit money. Individuals in the country hold the world’s highest proportion of such assets per capita, according to a survey by Statista.
Many Nigerians, due to the ban on cryptocurrencies by the apex bank, the CBN, have been forced to participate in the market through P2P exchanges, telegram groups and WhatsApp groups, where buyers and sellers alike come together to exchange tokens for cash.
These methods, although an alternative is still relatively flawed as there is a high crime rate as it largely depends on trust.
Source: Daily Trust