The IDAX CEO has allegedly run off with the cold wallet of the exchange, all employees have left or have been fired, and the platform’s token dropped to $0.
Blocklike reported on Weibo.com rumors of chaos at the China-based trading platform IDAX suggesting the exchange pulled an exit scam. Blocklike, citing unnamed insiders, the CEO of IDAX has allegedly fled the company taking the cold wallet with them. A rough translation from Blocklike’s sources added:
“Assets may be lost and the CEO hid. Among the employees nobody knows about his whereabouts except the boss’s confidant connecting through external channels.”
The founder, Lei Guorong, has allegedly not been in contact with any employees since November 26, 2019.
CoinMarketCap shows exchange volume of nearly $800 million in the past day, but a warning about fund withdrawal restrictions is posted on the IDAX page. On Nov. 23, IDAX posted an announcement on their website claiming that a high volume of “withdrawal request traffic” has congested the platform and asked for user’s patience. Shortly after, the exchange announced it would no longer provide service to users in China for “policy reasons.”
IDAX, which launched in December, 2017, is the only crypto exchange based in Mongolia, with its main office located in the GBC High-Tech Industrial Park in Ulaanbaatar. On Nov. 22, Coindoo.com, a Romanian media and information outlet, gave the exchange a rating of 4.5/5, citing “a diverse selection of coins” as one reason for the high approval rating. They did, however, caution that “[IDAX] has a murky regulatory situation, as the exchange is under Mongolian regulation.”
The company still has an active website and a Twitter and Telegram presence. As recently as three days ago, IDAX celebrated its 2 year anniversary, as well as tweeted promotional material offering a 20 percent discount on “Slat” token. The most recent is a pinned tweet, dated Nov. 10, thanking users and partners for their “great support.”
Happy IDAX 2nd Anniversary!!🎊🎊
We’re proud of what we’ve become. For these past 2 years, we’ve never stopped to keep improving.
Thank you all the users and partners for the great support 🤝🤝#IDAXturn2 pic.twitter.com/X3iMAC8dw8
— IDAX (@IDAXpro) November 11, 2019
It has been reported that the turmoil is merely FUD and people are overreacting to media hype. The slow response to withdrawal requests is simply an overload of the system from the number of users moving funds because of regulatory pressure, claims the exchange. Some users of the exchange, however, have a much different view.
Idax withdrawals have not been working for days now. Why are crypto influencers not talking about it?
— KinggKoinzz (@kryptokingg) November 25, 2019
According to frantic posts on the IDAX Telegram page, support and administrative contacts at IDAX have not responded to requests for the past three days. Between the hundreds of memes and humorous posts, frustrated users posted screen grabs of what appear to be an IDAX bot responding to requests. The overall sentiment, however, is that the exchange is no longer doing business.
CoinMarketCap continues to list the exchange as a top 25 marketplace with only a brief note indicating the above-mentioned withdrawal issues. CoinGecko has since delisted the native token, IDAX Token (IT), and included an announcement stating that “we have received reports that IDAX has shut down and ran away with users’ funds.”
The coming days will determine if users of the IDAX exchange are able to withdrawal their funds, or if this can be added to the list of crypto disasters. One Telegram user by the name of Sabin may have already gotten it right:
Reporting jointly by Eric Thomas and Liam J. Kelly. Crypto Briefing will continue to report on the incident as more information emerges.