[Update] The curious case of unannounced account shutdowns on Bittrex

October 17, 2017 by
Bittrex support

UPDATE –

Some scouring on twitter has revealed that this is a terms and conditions issue. Some internal slack channels are looking to sue the exchange for the same –

Earlier today, CoinTelegraph reported that they have received denial of service complaints from several Bittrex users. On raising tickets, these users haven’t been responded to, and when they tried reaching out to them on Slack, these users were banned.

Some of these accounts contained upto 6 BTC (more than 30,000 USD), and none of their queries and tickets have been responded to so far. Some Bittrex users suspect that this shutdown is account specific to Iran, Syria, India, Pakistan, Russia and Turkey.

It seems to be particularly severe in Iran, with one user reporting an alleged 3000 accounts banned in the region with no reason. Most users are also pointed out that they were verified users, ruling out KYC problems.

Support woes 

Any paid service demands a highly responsive customer service. This demand is even higher when it comes to financial services. However, Bittrex seems to be the antithesis of this, as they provide sporadic responses to numerous tweets regarding the issue. Their Slack channel isn’t accepting any new members and users complain that their support tickets haven’t been responded to.

Tech Problems at Bittrex? 

Cryptocurrency blog CryptoSyndicate reported that almost every coin reported on Bittrex saw a massive drop in value due to a possible tech snag. He said –

“Basically, every single cryptocurrency (alts) listed on Bittrex has fallen in a very similar pattern in relation to one another. Not every coin, but coins that are listed on Bittrex. Between the hours of 12:00 and 09:00 at UTC-4 on 8th October 2017, a large number of alts experienced a mass dump executed within minutes of each other. Coincidence? No other exchange has experienced these patterns in their assets. Cryptocurrencies that were NOT listed on Bittrex were not affected in the same way. Every other exchange we looked at, Binance, Kraken, Bitstamp, Coinbase, GDAX, Coss, Cryptopia, Yobit – all experienced patterns that were indicative of market reaction stemming from a single source of flash sell-down: Bittrex.”

Could we be looking at another Mt.Gox? 

It’s too early to say, but sudden and unexplained account shutdowns and lack of support for these users is nerve racking. Mt.Gox was hacked and a whopping 650,000 bitcoin was stolen and had a lot of people doubting online exchanges and wallets. As bitcoin prices increase, the number of investors will also increase. The cryptocurrency exchanges have to step up their game.

Tech glitch or not, the silence from the Bittrex team is has users reminded of another Mt.Gox. Nothing has been reported yet, but the silence from their team is deafening. We have reached out the Bittrex team for clarity on this situation and will update any developments.

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