Changelly: controversy around Monero and KYC

General Information

Changelly is one of the most popular decentralized exchanges in the world. The platform is currently under fire from critics, after some users have realized that the exchange was blocking and holding their tokens during some transactions deemed “suspicious”

The crypto planet is in full regulation these days, and we are seeing more and more platforms harden their KYC measures to escape the government’s wrath that seems to hang over all the players in the industry. The rather light procedures that made the interest of some platforms – like BitFlyer   – are in focus these days. But when some are rather transparent about the approach they will adopt, others have the unfortunate tendency to take their consumers by surprise, like LocalBitcoins , or, more recently, Changelly.

The Changelly case is still a major problem. Indeed, it seems that when a transaction too large, or just considered “suspicious” is done on the exchange, said transaction remains blocked if the user has not completed the KYC forms . An alert is then launched, and as long as the form is not completed, funds remain blocked, which is a very dubious practice, to say the least. It would indeed be more sensible and more just to prevent the transaction, rather than ransom personal data by taking a large amount of cryptocurrency hostage (for sums often considerable).

“I recently tried to convert about 6 BTCs using Changelly.com. This is not the first time I use their site, I did it a few months ago, without problems. There, my most recent transaction was put on hold AFTER I sent the corners. […] I had to send a photo of me holding my identity card, with a paper on which was written “changelly”. I sent them, and they sent me a message, asking me to prove that I am the legitimate holder of these funds. ” SanOra2 , a Reddit user

A BitcoinTalk thread recently opened to confront Changelly with these new measures. The team in charge of the exchange explained the reasons for the evolution of KYC procedures.

“We understand your frustrations, but the KYC procedure is designed to protect our users from fraudulent activity. Unfortunately, Monero attracts many criminals who try to cover their tracks by converting funds into XMR because it conceals the sender and the recipient. Due to the recent fraudulent activities associated with Monero, we must ensure that funds are not fraudulently obtained. We have put in place an alert to warn our users who want to make large transactions, with the information that their trade can be put on hold and that they will have to provide the documents required for the European directives and regulations KYC / AML. Please note that most exchanges are treated regularly and remain anonymous. ” Changelly, on BitcoinTalk

However, some users see an attack on Monero, as LoyceV , a Bitcointalk user, points out.

“Let me try this: convert 1212 XMR to bitcoins […] Is a quarter of a million dollars insufficient to require a KYC? When I try to convert bitcoins in XMR 30, [I get the alert message.] I’m pretty sure that directives KYC / AML in the EU have nothing to do with Monero especially […] » LoyceV

So, simple will to cooperate with the regulators, or real attack against Monero? It is true that requesting an identity check for an anonymous corner completely reduces the interest of the latter, and it seems that KYC’s requests are really focused on XMR purchases. More information is coming as the story unfolds …

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