OKEx, one of the top crypto spot and derivatives exchanges, has suspended all withdrawals indefinitely, citing it lost touch with one of its private key holders.
In an official statement published on Friday morning, the exchange detailed that it has suspended all withdrawals since 11 am (Hong Kong time) on October 16.
“One of our private key holders is currently cooperating with a public security bureau in investigations where required,” the notice stated. “We have been out of touch with the concerned private key holder. As such, the associated authorization could not be completed.”
The exchange pointed out the service agreement that allows it to take such drastic measures and stressed that the decision was made in the best interests of customers.
“Pursuant to 8.1 Service Change and Interruption of the Terms of Service, OKEx may change the Service and/or may also interrupt, suspend or terminate the service at any time with or without prior notice,” OKEx noted.
Additionally, the exchange assured that its other services remain uninterrupted and the customers’ assets are safe.
Outrage among Users
Meanwhile, this abrupt withdrawal suspension has created an outcry in the crypto community. Many took to Twitter to criticize the move.
Bitcoin prices on the exchange also dropped drastically by 3 percent after the suspension.
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hmmmm okex token dumping really hard, what’s going on pic.twitter.com/hxNdM9UQtQ
— SergPi (3,14159265) (@GameTheoryBTC) October 16, 2020
Interestingly, large amounts in Bitcoin, Ether, and Tron were taken out from OKEx-affiliated wallets prior to the suspension, Whale Alert, a blockchain tracker and analytics service, revealed.
— Whale Alert (@whale_alert) October 16, 2020
“We will resume digital assets/cryptocurrencies withdrawals immediately once the concerned private key holder is able to authorize the transaction,” OKEx added.