Since a few days ago, German bank Sparkasse, has been blocking cryptocurrency orders, returning money to customers, said Dutch cryptocurrency exchange Anycoin Direct.
Several users banking at German bank Sparkasse, reported to Anycoin Direct that they were contacted by their banks with the message that the transactions to buy cryptocurrencies were blocked. Investigating on the matter, Anycoin Direct said that all payment methods available at Sparkasse are affected, including Sofort, online bank transfer and SEPA.
Spokesperson Bram Ceelen told Cointelegraph they had not been warned by Sparkasse, although Anycoin Direct tried desperately to contact them. Ceelen stated:
"I don’t know why they have taken this action, especially without contacting us and ignoring our attempts to contact them [...] [Banks] abuse their power without any good reason or explanation."
The company is still filing all the events in order to have a full report on what happened. So far, Anycoin Direct had received 6-7 reports from customers.
Financial damage is yet to be determined as Anycoin Direct used to send the cryptocurrencies once payments are said to be successful by their system, resulting in the exchange to send coins before realizing that payments to Sparkasse were blocked. The company stated it will no longer operate this way and will have to wait until the money arrives at their bank account before sending cryptocurrencies to users’ accounts.
The crypto exchange platform said it has been running an honest business and expressed confusion regarding the sudden change of position from Sparkasse.
Anycoin Direct seems to be the only cryptocurrency exchange facing difficulties with Sparkasse. American Bitcoin exchange Kraken and Swedish Safello are said to not be experiencing any issues with Sparkasse, as reported by Cryptoarticles.
Nevertheless, similar events had been reported from Germany. In mid-December 2014, LocalBitcoins.com was forced to halt service in Germany due to regulatory fears, prompting renewed questions about the country's perspective on digital currencies.
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