Cryptocurrency traders are still struggling to profit from bitcoin’s recent record run as their funds continued to be frozen inside the most popular cryptocurrency exchange for as long as five weeks.
Some customers of Coinbase, which lets users buy, sell and store cryptocurrencies like bitcoin and ethereum, continue to be told their accounts are ‘under review’, only a small number of customers were affected and most had had their accounts restored.
The exchange has struggled with customer service problems amid tighter regulation of cryptocurrency trading and a surge in activity from those seeking to cash in on bitcoin’s record run.
It also suffered technical problems on Wednesday and Thursday, which it described as ‘connectivity issues’, with complaints from customers spiking last night as the price of bitcoin briefly touched $40,000.
Customers of Coinbase are still reporting having their bitcoin frozen for weeks
This was fixed in the early hours of Friday morning, with the Californian company tweeting: ‘We’re aware that some customers experienced issues while using Coinbase today.
‘We know that we’re letting many of you down and we’re committed to doing better.
We appreciate you bearing with us during this exciting time for the cryptoeconomy.
Customers began reporting difficulties accessing their money as long ago as last October, with even those who had been with the platform for years told they needed to re-upload identity documents like their passport and driving licence, after which they were told their accounts were under review and were unable to access their money.
But the problems are persisting, with traders on the exchange telling us the same thing has happened to them only days before the end of 2020, a fortnight after we published our report into the original problems faced by traders.
And one trader, Robert Jones, told us he was unable to touch £7,000 of bitcoin he had deposited onto the exchange at the end of November for five weeks, after his account was only unfrozen on Tuesday.
Coinbase also suffered technical problems on Wednesday and Thursday with some customers unable to trade.
Complaints spiked Thursday night as the price of bitcoin briefly hit $40,000
He was required to verify his account almost as soon as he had loaded the money onto the exchange, where he intended to sell it as the price increased.
Bitcoin has surged in value over the last 12 months and currently trades at over $38,500 a coin, according to Coindesk.
Since the end of October, when customers began reporting their accounts were frozen, the price has risen from just under $13,900, a rise of around 133 per cent.
The website Down Detector received hundreds of complaints about Coinbase on Wednesday and Thursday as the exchange suffered technical problems
But the actions by San Francisco-based Coinbase, which has 35million worldwide users and is popular among casual investors as it lets them buy bitcoin with smaller sums of money, have left many unable either to bank existing profits or take advantage of the price rise and make more.
Mr Jones told us in mid-December: ‘As soon as I loaded the bitcoin Coinbase said my account needed to be verified.
I uploaded my drivers’ license as required and expected it to be processed quickly.
Bitcoin has surged in price to more than $38,500 over the last year, and has more than doubled the previous all-time high set in 2017
’17 days later and it still says my account is under review.
I have raised 4 tickets, I had one response that said someone would look at it in 24-48 hours and still nothing. There is no phone support.
‘I’m obviously petrified that I’m going to lose £7,000 and there seems to be no way to contact them or r binance meitä do anything about it, the internet is littered with similar complaints.’
After his account was finally unlocked, ‘I took the opportunity and sold my crypto and closed the account with them’, he said.
<div class="art-ins mol-factbox floatRHS money" data-version="2" id="mol-fd0e1e90-500d-11eb-a1e1-75ce8a61d8fd" website crypto traders continue to have funds frozen for weeks