Exit Scam? Dublin-Based Exchange Bitsane Vanishes With Users’ Funds

Ireland-based cryptocurrency exchange Bitsane has apparently vanished, taking as many as 246,000 users’ crypto deposits with it. The news was reported by Forbes on June 27.

Launched in 2016, Dublin-registered Bitsane LP was formerly listed as one of Ripple’s approved exchanges — a January 2018 CNBC article had also pitched the exchange as an option for investors seeking to trade XRP ahead of its listing on major platforms such as Coinbase.

According to Forbes, user withdrawals on Bitsane began faltering in May of this year, with allegedly technical reasons cited as the reason for their temporary disabling. By June 17, both the Bitsane site and its social media accounts had been deleted, with emails to Bitsane accounts bouncing back as undeliverable.

Moreover, neither the exchange’s CEO — Aidas Rupsys — nor its chief technology officer, Dmitry Prudnikov, could be reached by Forbes during the magazine’s investigation into the case. At press time, Prudnikov’s LinkedIn profile appears to have been deleted.

As of May 30 2019, Bitsane counted 246,000 registered users, with a daily traded volume of just over $7 million on March 31, per CoinMarketCap.

User groups on messaging platform Telegram and Facebook reveal users claiming to have typically lost up to $5,000, with Forbes citing an anonymous U.S. resident who says he had $150,000 in XRP and bitcoin (BTC) on the exchange prior to the company’s disappearance.

Forbes further reports on a separate firm, incorporated in the United Kingdom as Bitsane Limited by Maksim Zmitrovich in August 2017, which apparently attempted to purchase the intellectual rights to Bistane’s code and use it as the basis for its own platform, dubbed Azbit. 

According to Zmitrovich, the firm has assumed the Bitsane name to fulfil a condition set by Bistane’s developers, yet the desired partnership between the two firms failed to materialize. 

In a blog post published earlier this month, Zmitrovich has vehemently denied any…

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