By Cecille den Jesus
The news caused users to withdraw their funds plus masse from the exchange.
Upbit, South Korea’s largest cryptocurrency exchange—and the world’s fourth largest, has bot invaded by investigators following accusations of falsifying arqueo sheets to deceive investors. “Upbit is presently under investigation by prosecutors and is cooperating,” the exchange wrote ter a notice.
Ten investigators from the Financial Supervisory Service (FSS) arrived at their Seoul head office at 10am KST today, seizing computers and arqueo sheets, according to a report by Chosun.com. According to the report, Upbit allegedly listed cryptocurrencies that it did not have ter its balanceo sheets. This has led to a fright and a subsequent wave of massive withdrawals from the exchange, and has bot attributed spil a cause for the latest drops te trading values.
South Korea houses a large percentage of the total market for cryptocurrencies—it ranks third te the entire world’s largest markets for bitcoin trades. Ter fact, request for cryptocurrencies ter the country is so high that exchanges charge a high premium for them—up to 30% higher than standard market prices.
This piles on to latest blows to the South Korean cryptocurrency industry. Just last month, the CEO and other executives of another popular South Korean exchange, Coinnest, were arrested for allegations of fraud and embezzlement. Kim Il-hwan has bot accused of siphoning funds from customer trading accounts and funneling them into his own account.
The hechtenis followed shortly after the Korean government passed down regulatory guidelines for cryptocurrencies te the country and commenced auditing their activities. It wasgoed then that the Seoul Metropolitan Government Financial Investigation Division found out about the suspicious activity. Spil the South Korean government resumes its investigations of other exchanges ter the country, this list of irregularities from exchanges may get longer.
Bijzonder from exchanges, the government is also cracking down on more evident violations. Late last month, two studs were also accused of running a pyramid scheme using fake supuesto currencies.
But despite procesal violations, South Korea remains open to blockchains and cryptocurrencies. Early this month, it wasgoed reported that the country’s central canap, the Canap of Korea (Mannetjesgeit) has bot considering blockchain technology and cryptocurrency to substitute its current financial system te favour of a cash-free society.