Users are flocking to social media for help with lost assets
Some customers say their accounts were used to buy Viacoin
Binance, one of the biggest cryptocurrency marketplaces by volume, is trying to calm angry customers who claim their digital coins were sold without their permission.
“All funds are safe,” wrote Zhao Changpeng, chief executive officer of Asia-based Binance, in a tweet Wednesday. “There were irregularities in trading activity, automatic alarms triggered. Some accounts may have been compromised by phishing from before. We are still investigating.”
Still, traders appear to be in panic mode, taking to Reddit, Twitter and the chat app Telegram in search of help. In the “Binance English” Telegram group, which has nearly 65,000 members, some are saying they’ve lost thousands of dollars. Many are worried the trading platform was hacked. Others expressed frustration because Binance halted the withdrawal feature to investigate the incident.
“I lost everything,” a user named Joey Raye said in a message. “If Binance do not reimburse I am ruined.”
Another person said their account was almost completely emptied when someone got access to it and sold $92,000 worth of their crypto for Bitcoin, used that Bitcoin to buy a token called Viacoin, and then withdrew the Viacoin. Three people told Bloomberg News that their accounts were used to purchase Viacoin without their permission.
Viacoin is the 151st-biggest cryptocurrency, according to Coinmarketcap.com. Its price has surged 24 percent in the past day, giving the token a total market value of about $70 million. Binance said Feb. 4 that it was listing Viacoin on its marketplace.
This isn’t the first time the firm has had to face angry customers. Last month it missed several deadlines it had set to reopen after a system upgrade, spurring an online backlash from users who had been cut off from trading and withdrawals for more than 35 hours. There was speculation at the time that Binance had been hacked. Changpeng said the rumors weren’t true.
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