CoinFLEX stops withdrawals due to "continued uncertainty involving a counterparty"

Yield farming platform CoinFLEX is the latest crypto platform to stop allowing customers to withdraw their money. Customers had raised concerns about withdrawals not processing, to which a team member repeatedly replied that "we haven't stopped withdrawals" and urged chatters to "please stop spreading FUD".

The company then posted an announcement that they would be "pausing all withdrawals" due to "extreme market conditions last week & continued uncertainty involving a counterparty". They were cagey about the identity of the counterparty, though the announcement explicitly stated it was not the underwater hedge fund Three Arrows Capital, which has been causing a domino effect throughout the crypto industry.

Invictus Capital suspends withdrawals

Invictus Capital, the group operating several cryptos in the Cayman Islands and the British Virgin Islands, announced to investors that it would be suspending redemptions. The company cited exposure to both Terra and the Celsius project, both of which have gone under in recent months. According to the announcement, the group is pursuing restructuring. The group claimed to have over $135 million under management.

Ontario Securities Commission settles with Bybit, bans and fines KuCoin for securities violations

The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) accused crypto trading platforms Bybit and Kucoin of operating unregistered platforms and offering unregistered securities to Ontarian investors.

Bybit opted to settle with the OSC, disgorging about CA$2.5 million (US$1.9 million) and has begun working with the OSC to become compliant.

OSC accused KuCoin of not complying with the investigation, and permanently banned the exchange from operating in Ontario. The OSC also levied a CA$2 million (US$1.5 million) fine against the exchange.

Voyager Digital reduces withdrawal limit after reporting $660 million exposure to Three Arrows Capital

Voyager Digital disclosed that they had loaned $350 million in stablecoins and 15,250 Bitcoin (around $310 million) to Three Arrows Capital, a crypto hedge fund that could not meet its margin calls amidst a crypto downturn and the failure of large projects like Terra. Voyager asked 3AC to repay the loan, but reported they were "unable to assess at this point the amount it will be able to recover". They did not disclose whether they held collateral for the loan. After the announcement, shares of the publicly-traded company plummeted more than 60%.

Later that day, Voyager reduced the daily withdrawal limit from $25,000 to $10,000, suggesting they were having trouble meeting customer demand for withdrawals.

The prior week, Voyager announced they had secured a line of credit from Alameda Research amounting to $200 million in cash and 15,000 Bitcoin. Alameda Research is a trading firm founded by Sam Bankman-Fried, who also runs the FTX crypto exchange.

Sam Bankman-Fried performs second bailout, loaning $250 million to BlockFi

Crypto exchange FTX loaned $250 million to BlockFi, a crypto lending platform that recently announced 20% layoffs as they struggled to weather the crypto downturn. BlockFi also had loaned funds to Three Arrows Capital, an insolvent crypto hedge fund, although they claim to have successfully liquidated 3AC's positions.

The FTX loan represents the second bailout of a crypto firm by Sam Bankman-Fried's companies, after his Alameda Research trading firm extended credit equivalent to around $485 million to floundering crypto platform Voyager.

Bybit plans to cut 20–30% of its workforce

Bybit, a Dubai-based cryptocurrency exchange, is reportedly joining the group of crypto companies laying off employees amidst plummeting cryptocurrency markets. Journalist Colin Wu reported that Bybit plans to lay off about 20–30% of its 2,000 employees, or around 400–600 people.

Two QAnon influencers running crypto scams steal more than $2 million from their followers

Research firm Logically published an investigation into two QAnon influencers who successfully convinced their follower to put more than $2 million into crypto scams. Telling their followers that they could predict the success of cryptocurrencies because of access to "secret military intelligence", they capitalized on QAnon conspiracy theories to defraud their followers through various pump-and-dump schemes. The influencers made claims including that they had personal connections with Elon Musk, Donald Trump, and John F. Kennedy, Jr. (who died in 1999, despite some QAnon theories), or that "aliens want us to trade cryptocurrency 'as an on-ramp to familiarize ourselves with the quantum financial system until we can evolve into 5D and trade assets with our consciousness'".

According to Logically, the "vast majority" of people following the influencers' investment advice "lost anywhere between several hundred and tens of thousands of dollars". One man lost more than $100,000, resulting in him also losing his house and construction business. The man ultimately died by suicide.

South Korea bans current and former Terraform Labs employees from leaving the country

A former employee of Terraform Labs, the company behind the Terra project that collapsed in May, found that he was banned from leaving the country. According to the former employee, he wasn't notified at all: "when i found out about this, the south korean prosecution told me they usually don't notify people of this because they might destroy evidence and/or leave the country beforehand".

He later clarified that he was willing to cooperate with the investigation against TFL, but was dismayed that employees who left long before the collapse were facing an exit ban, and that they weren't notified of the ban.

Terra is facing a class action lawsuit from Korean investors, and local news had previously reported that South Korean authorities had launched an investigation.

Lacoste Discord among the latest to be hacked

So, apparently polo shirts have NFTs now. Fashion brand Lacoste's NFT project is titled "Undw3", which is apparently supposed to be pronounced "underwater"—I guess if you say the 3 in French it sort of sounds like the English... word... "underwater"... anyway. The Discord for that NFT project was one of the latest to be hacked in a string of Discord hacks so prolific that I've basically stopped reporting on them individually. Like many recent Discord hacks, this one was accomplished by compromising a moderator's account. The account was then used to post a fake mint link, and users who signed the transaction approval found their assets transferred to the attacker.

Since the last post about an NFT project having its Discord compromised, five days ago, we've seen at least fifteen more projects suffer the same: Clyde, Good Skellas, Duppies, Oak Paradise, Tasties, Yuko Clan, Mono Apes, ApeX Club, Anata, GREED, CITADEL, DegenIslands, Sphynx Underground Society, FUD Bois, and Uncanny Club.

Hoo exchange pauses withdrawals

The Hong Kong-based cryptocurrency exchange Hoo announced that they would be pausing withdrawals, after so many customers tried to withdraw their crypto that they began to run out of funds in their hot wallet. The company assured customers in a blog post that the pause was temporary and that withdrawals would resume in 24–72 hours once transfers from a "backup multi-signature wallet and other assets" were complete, leaving one to wonder what those other assets might be. The blog post finished by stating, "The platform is trying to reconfigure medium- and long-term assets in an orderly and reasonable manner. Please don't worry and there will be no loss of your assets."

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