Cryptocurrency trading platform BitMEX has long been popular among North American investors, offering the ability to leverage positions as much as 100x.
However, these investors have been banned since 2015 from using the platform, due to regulatory prohibitions based on the exchange’s Hong Kong location. Of course, this was easily bypassed by the use of a VPN that allowed investors to access BitMEX through an approved location.
Now, according to a recent report by the South China Morning Post, BitMEX is actively applying strict account screeners and shutting down North American investor accounts as global regulators intensify their crackdown on unlicensed cryptocurrency trading platforms.
This move reportedly comes after the Autorité des Marchés Financiers (AMF), Quebec’s financial regulator, sent a letter to BitMEX asking it to close all accounts linked to citizens within the province.
“BitMEX is not registered with the AMF and is therefore not authorized to have activities in the province of Quebec,” AMF’s director of media relations told the South China Morning Post. “We informed this company that its activities were illegal.”
In response, BitMEX told Cointelegraph Japan that the report included at least 6 mistakes. The exchange also made it clear that they have had a policy in place since 2015 to remove unauthorized access to the platform since basic guidance was obtained from U.S. regulatory agencies. According to the rebuttal, “The [only] thing that changed in the fourth quarter of 2018 is that Bitmex began using warning banners and popups to notify all potential new users about this process.”
This ongoing account crackdown will likely serve to reduce the exchange’s annual trading volume, which topped $965 billion in 2018.
Photo: Marco Verch / Flickr
Disclaimer: This article’s author has cryptocurrency holdings that can be tracked here. This article is for informational purposes only and should not be taken as investment advice. Always conduct your own due diligence before making investments.