South African Exchange Ice3x Shuts Down

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  • One of South Africa’s oldest exchanges, Ice3x, has announced that it is closing down
  • Ice3x had halted withdrawals weeks ago after finding a discrepancy in its BTC and LTC holdings
  • The exchange abruptly halted withdrawals last month

South African crypto exchange Ice3x announced this week that it is to shut its doors three weeks after halting bitcoin and litecoin withdrawals due to a discrepancy in their assumed and actual holdings. Ice3x posted an update on its website on Tuesday stating that it will not return to operation following a lengthy manual withdrawal process, with those who didn’t file a withdrawal claim before March 23 and anyone holding BTC and LTC on the platform potentially losing their funds.

BTC and LTC Holders Hung Out to Dry

The issues for Ice3x date back to March 16 when they informed users that they had been alerted to “discrepancies in the balances pertaining to Bitcoin and Litecoin we hold on the platform”. This resulted in a halting of BTC and LTC withdrawals “pending the outcome of a full investigation and reconciliation” and advised all users to withdraw their funds “as soon as possible”, something that should have acted as the biggest red flag a customer could ever wish to see.

This was followed by regular updates informing customers of how they were progressing with withdrawals. On the 23rd they abruptly disabled withdrawals on the platform as they fought to deal with the backlog, which was being handled manually.

Ice3x Begins Liquidation

Sometime between March 31 and April 6 they cleared all non-BTC and LTC withdrawals, whereupon the exchange advised that they would close down:

We regret to inform you that the platform will not return to operation and that we have been advised to initiate liquidation proceedings.

This is the worst possible news for those who did not get their withdrawal request in before March 23rd and anyone still holding BTC and LTC on the exchange.

There has been no explanation yet as to how much BTC and LTC Ice3x has lost or how it came to do so, but clearly some kind of theft or mismanagement has taken place. Those with funds still on the platform will be fearful that all their holdings have gone and will be fervently hoping that the liquidation process at least gets some of their money back.