- Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, has suspended 281 Nigerian users’ personal accounts, citing the need to comply with international money laundering rules, according to its CEO.
- In a statement to Nigerian users dated Jan. 29, Changpeng Zhao stated that the decision to block some personal accounts was made to ensure user safety, with more than a third of the accounts impacted being restricted at the request of international law enforcement.
- “Currently, we have resolved 79 cases and continue to work through others. All non-law enforcement-related cases will be resolved within two weeks,” Changpeng Zhao stated.
Following claims made against Binance by its Nigerian users, Changpeng Zhao (CZ), Binance’s CEO and Asia’s richest man, has sent a statement to its Nigerian users titled “Our commitment to User Protection.”
The letter from CZ comes after the Binance Africa team, led by Emmanuel Babalola, the exchange’s African director, Damilola Odufuwa, the exchange’s PR lead, and Ben Nsikan, the community manager for Binance Africa, hosted an Ask Me Anything (AMA) session on YouTube, where the team set out to address various issues raised around social media, particularly about the world’s global exchange, locking accounts of its African users, particularly its Nigerian users.
Binance, one of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges, has explained why 281 Nigerian users’ accounts have been suspended.
Changpeng Zhao, the company’s CEO, wrote in a letter that 38% of the impacted accounts had been banned at the request of international law enforcement.
Multiple consumers of the Binance worldwide exchange had expressed their dissatisfaction on social media.
Some Nigerian users complained that they could not access their accounts for no apparent reason offered by the exchange.
CZ repented for their conduct, “First and foremost, we apologise for any difficulty caused by the time it took us to respond to your customer service requests. The safety of our users is still our top priority.”
Binance reassured that they love and care about their Nigerian community, but they must ensure that their users are safe.
As a result, safeguards like Know Your Customer (KYC), anti-money laundering procedures, engagement with law enforcement, and account limits are in place to keep our community safe and prevent fraudulent behaviour. This is a global strategy that is implemented in every country.
Here’s how Binance is restoring consumer trust:
- Ensuring quick settlement of outstanding user cases including account restrictions: We’ve already resolved 79 cases and are working on the rest. All cases that are not related to law enforcement will be addressed within two weeks.
- More customer service and risk agents will be sent to the region, Binance will assign more customer service and risk agents that are well-versed in the Nigerian market.
In addition to the letter, CZ also tweeted, “Not perfect, but transparent. Apologies for the inconvenience. And thank you for your support and understanding!”
The Twitter community reacted positively to CZ’s response, but it is still evident that users will not forget about this issue anytime soon.
On Wednesday, many users of the Binance global exchange complained about social media, accusing the exchange of suspending accounts for weeks or months without providing any feedback or explanation.
On Wednesday, it was the third most popular topic on Twitter, with over 25,000 tweets. It was also in the top five on Thursday, with over 10,000 tweets using the hashtag #BinanceStopScamming.
Several individuals have reported that Binance deleted their accounts or froze their crypto assets without explanation.
In an official response to the concerns, Binance Africa claimed in a tweet on January 26 that access to some accounts had been limited. On the other hand, the exchange maintained that accounts are only disabled when there is a valid reason.