Russian cryptocurrency exchange Livecoin has announced it is shutting down after abruptly halting operations in late December 2020.
According to Livecoin’s main page, the exchange is unable to continue operations due to financial and technical damages caused by an alleged attack on its servers in late 2020. Livecoin announced the shutdown on Jan. 16 on Twitter, linking to its new domain “Livecoin.news.” Livecoin’s previous domain Livecoin.net is not available at publishing time.
Livecoin said that it is looking to “pay the remaining funds” to its clients, asking users to contact the exchange via email to complete verification. In order to initiate the procedure, Livecoin users have to send their usernames and the registration date on the platform.
The exchange promised to provide detailed instructions in a reply, noting that reimbursement claims will be accepted until March 17, 2021. “After this date no new requests will be accepted,” Livecoin said. The exchange did not specify when Livecoin expects to repay its customers.
Livecoin also warned users about unofficial Livecoin chat groups that may be spreading false information and trying to defraud users. “Participating in these groups you run a high risk, because we [do not have any] groups,” Livecoin wrote, claiming that its website is the only source of official information. The company also said that there is an ongoing investigation.
Livecoin did not immediately respond to Cointelegraph’s request for comment.
As previously reported, Livecoin halted operations on Dec. 24, claiming that the exchange suffered a “carefully planned attack” causing it to lose control of all of its servers.
As part of the incident, hackers managed to take over Livecoin’s infrastructure and modify the prices on the exchange to abnormally high values. As such, Livecoin reportedly traded Bitcoin (BTC) at above $300,000, while its market price amounted to around $24,000 at the time. Some users subsequently suggested that Livecoin's “hack” could be an exit scam.
While Livecoin urges its users to stay away from media channels, its supposed clients are struggling to get their funds back using Livecoin’s unofficial Telegram group. Some reported users speculated that Livecoin’s latest announcement could have been made by hackers, while others filed complaints with local enforcement proceedings.
Some users have refused to send their personal data to Livecoin over privacy concerns. One alleged exchange user provided a list of data supposedly required by Livecoin’s reimbursement procedure including passport scans, residence information, high-resolution selfies, data about the first transaction on the exchange, devices used on the platform, as well as a video of a withdrawal of the first incoming transaction.