Hyped to be one of the world’s most advanced crypto exchange, HitBTC is gaining attention for all the wrong reasons since the start of 2019. A lot of news flow that has surfaced in the last few days have attached the exchange’s name with controversies, including those of scams and insolvency.
Not a good start for HitBTC in 2019
While the year 2018 is expected to bring back good times to cryptos, one of the most technically advanced crypto exchange, HitBTC, hasn’t had the best of the starts for the year. The exchange is marred by rumors and blames that it is hit by a SCAM and certain news flow suggests that the exchange might be heading to bankruptcy. There’s criticism coming in from individuals and from the leading influencers in the industry regarding exchange’s inability to withdraw funds and its bizarre KYC procedures.
All problems began at the ‘Proof Of Keys’ event which was held on 3 January 2018, that brought HitBTC to the spotlight. The idea behind the proof of keys event was to withdraw crypto funds from exchanges in an attempt to identify crypto exchanges and third parties that do not have adequate liquidity, essentially exposing exchanges that do not hold the amount of crypto they should be holding. During the event, most people reported that HitBTC would not be in a position to manage if all users withdraw their funds. While HitBTC ducked that claim and survived a catastrophe at the Proof of Keys event, the problems didn’t end there for HitBTC.
Looking at all the newsflow and the uproar that had emerged on social media, John McAfee, a prominent crypto influencer came out and criticized HitBTC. In the tweet McAfee mentioned his warnings to people of the illegitimacy of HitBTC, saying
You had six months warning from me to withdraw your funds. Do not ask me to help you now.
I warned everyonw more than a dozen times. Don't sign up. Don't use it. Withdtaw your funds. I was trashed for calling out HitBT as a corrupt cimpany. Tough shit. You had six months warning from me to withdraw your funds. Do not ask me to help you now.https://t.co/Ls9mzpUSbz
— John McAfee (@officialmcafee) January 2, 2019
While the exchange was getting away with the Proof of Keys event, users start complaining about the bizarre experiences with the KYC procedures that include activities such as, asking for social media account info and taking pictures of oneself in different areas of their houses.
The Subreddit page of HitBTC is also rife with various comments that are not quite in favor of the exchange. Furthermore, over the last few hours, there were comments from users who have reported normal withdrawals, a lot of them are still queued to get their monies back. Another issue on Reddit is that the Reddit user ‘@HitBTC’ is suspended and the only moderator of the HitBTC’s Reddit page was, in fact, the user @HitBTC. Therefore the Reddit page is currently not run by anyone at this point.
While all these problems looming, a trader on Reddit known by ‘u/colonelnipples’ wrote that he opened an account with HitBTC and deposited $700 with no issues and purchased Ethereum with it. However, when he tried to withdraw the amount, he received a message from the exchange, that he needs to complete full KYC. Interestingly, this was his first transaction on the platform.
HitBTC, which began with high hopes and promises of being the most advanced crypto exchange seems to be falling apart. Hope the exchange finds a solution soon or it would be very close to shutting down its doors, as a lot of news suggests.
Will HitBTC comes out clear from the mess it has created? Do let us know your views on the same.
Nilesh Maurya has been associated for past 8 years as an Investment Banker with Omega Capital, a bespoke Investment Banking outfit having offices in Mumbai, New York, Singapore, and Dubai. He has been a regular contributor to business publications such as Business India and Market Express and has been a mentor to many start-up companies. Nilesh Maurya has been associated for past 8 years as an Investment Banker with Omega Capital, a bespoke Investment Banking outfit having offices in Mumbai, New York, Singapore, and Dubai. He has been a regular contributor to business publications such as Business India and Market Express and has been a mentor to many start-up companies. Follow him on Twitter at @KoinKing1 or connect with me on linkedin.