British Court Orders Binance to Identify and Freeze Hackers’ Accounts After a User Claims Funds Stolen
A U.K. judge has reportedly ordered cryptocurrency exchange Binance to identify hackers and freeze their accounts after one of its users claimed to be the victim of a $2.6 million hack.
Binance Ordered to Help Recover Funds Allegedly Stolen in a Hack
A London high court has ordered global cryptocurrency exchange Binance to identify hackers and freeze their accounts after one of its users, Fetch.ai, claimed to be the victim of a $2.6 million hack, Reuters reported Friday.
The judge granted requests by the artificial intelligence (AI) company for Binance to identify the hackers as well as track and seize the alleged stolen assets, the judgment made public this week revealed.
Fetch.ai, incorporated in England and Singapore, develops AI projects for blockchain databases. The company claimed that its Binance account was hacked on June 6. “Unable to remove the assets because of account restrictions, they allegedly sold them to a linked third party at a fraction of their value in under an hour,” the news outlet conveyed.
A Binance spokesperson said, “We can confirm that we are helping Fetch.ai in the recovery of assets,” elaborating:
Binance routinely freezes accounts that are identified as having suspicious activity occurring in line with our security policies and commitment to ensuring that users are protected while using our platform.
Syedur Rahman, a partner at Rahman Ravelli, which is representing Fetch.ai, told Reuters that Binance notified his client of unusual activity in its account and had already frozen a sum. Noting that he believes Binance would comply with the court orders, Rahman opined:
We need to dispel the myth that cryptoassets are anonymous. The reality is that with the right rules and applications they can be tracked, traced and recovered.
A growing list of regulators worldwide have issued warnings against Binance, including the U.K.’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). The British regulator issued a consumer warning in June stating that no entities in the Binance Group hold “any form of UK authorisation, registration or licence to conduct regulated activity in the UK.”
Binance said it is committed to complying with local rules wherever it operates and has expanded its international compliance team and advisory board. The exchange’s CEO, Changpeng Zhao (CZ), recently said his company wants “to be licensed everywhere” and become a financial institution.
He also revealed that Binance had been looking for a CEO with a strong compliance background. Last week, former U.S. regulator Brian Brooks resigned as the chief executive officer of Binance US.
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