Bitfinex stops serving US residents

At the initial stage, which starts from 12.08, the exchange stops accepting new verification requests from US users
12 August

Bitfinex, the Hong Kong based cryptocurrency exchange, announced that it is stopping the services for US residents. The process will be phased in and will be completed in 90 days.

According to the Bitfinex statement, the exchange planned to stop US residents serving some time ago and is now launching this procedure. 

Several factors have gone into this decision:

  • While we have been able to normalize banking for some corporate customers and individuals in certain jurisdictions, compliant banking solutions for U.S. individuals remain elusive. We have been slowly and selectively inviting users in particular jurisdictions who meet set criteria to start using banking channels that have come online. This process is ongoing.
  • A surprisingly small percentage of our revenues come from verified U.S. individual accounts while a dramatically outsized portion of our resources goes into servicing the needs of U.S. individuals, including support, legal and regulatory.
  • We anticipate the regulatory landscape to become even more challenging in the future.
  • Bitfinex is not based in the United States. Exchanges based in the U.S. are better positioned to properly service retail U.S. customers.
     

Bitfinex Team

At the initial stage, which starts from 12.08, the exchange stops accepting new verification requests from US users. Maintenance of existing US users will be terminated in 90 days.

Additionally, Bitfinex denies the access for US users to trade certain digital tokens. Restrictions apply to ERC20-tokens, which are used in the ICO and take effect at 12:00 UTC on Wednesday, August 16. Restrictions on trading tokens EOS (EOS) and Santiment (SAN) take effect immediately.

The stock exchange also added that it reserves the right to further policy changes depending on the circumstances.

Ethereum network is still unstable

Byzantium had executed on Monday, but developers aren't ready to call the software transition complete
18 October

Organizations and developers are better off refraining from launching large projects until the Ethereum network is fully stable after the recent Byzantium update. This is said by the Gavin Wood, Parity Technologies head and reported by the Coindesk.

Since new versions of the software were released just days before the fork, much of the network has not yet been updated. So, at the time of press, slightly more than 25% of Parity customers updated, in Geth this indicator is slightly higher - about 59%. So, in total, the update was made about 45% of the network.

Another aspect that should also be taken into account is the short time for testing. In particular, the developers recalled previous versions of the software, discovering critical errors that could make the network vulnerable to DoS attacks or lead to incompatibility between nodes and, as a consequence, network sharing.

Therefore, the question of how safe the network is at the moment is fully justified and, taking into account what has been said above, remains open. This is exactly what Gavin Wood warned, recommending at this stage to refrain from launching large-scale projects.

In addition to the nodes that have yet to update, there is also a possibility that in the current Byzantium software there may be bugs that endanger the security of the Ethereum network. The most dangerous among them is a bug of consensus, in which nodes can not communicate. Its result can be the separation of the block-man into several incompatible chains.

As far as is known, at the moment developers are conducting extensive tests, trying to detect such bugs before they are active. As Gavin Wood says, if the network does contain such a bug, it will take several days to prove itself.

I don't think anyone believed the network was going to self-combust on block 4,370,000.
 

Gavin Wood
Head, Parity Technologies

The head of Parity Technologies is also convinced that if problems are discovered, the Ethereum development team will quickly release new updates designed to prevent any harm to the platform.