Binance, the largest crypto exchange by trading volume, has suspended Euro bank deposits from one of Europe’s critical payment networks: The Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA).
Starting from 8 AM Universal Coordinated Time, today on Wednesday, July 7, customers would not deposit funds through the SEPA network. The exchange sent emails to European users of the exchange stating that customers would no longer be able to deposit cash through SEPA.
The exchange clarified that the decision to suspend euro bank deposits from one of Europe’s key payment networks was temporary, triggered by events beyond its control. Consumers are still able to make withdrawals of their Euros through the exchange via SEPA. Payments through debit and credit cards would not be affected as well.
SEPA is a network whose aim is to make Euro payments cheap, easy, and quick by creating a single market for euro-denominated payments. Cryptocurrency clients use SEPA to transfer huge sums of cash to exchanges.
The financial institution has been accessing SEPA through various intermediaries. SEPA links payments networks throughout the region, thus allowing users to transfer Euros across nations. Binance clients in 36 countries who use SEPA would not use the system to deposit cash.
Enforcement Actions Against the Exchange
Binance’s announcement follows a series of regulator actions against the exchange.
Yesterday, June 6, Barclay bank banned UK customers from making debit and credit payments to Binance. The British-based bank acted after the UK’s financial regulator informed the exchange to halt its regulated activities.
However, this is not the first time that the exchange has come under scrutiny by regulators worldwide.
Binance Group, which used to based in Malta, is currently Cayman Islands-based. The company has multiple entities spread across the world.
Last week, Cayman Islands’ financial regulator joined the list of other regulators that are scrutinising Binance. Cayman Islands Monetary Authority (CIMA) stated that the exchange has not registered its operation in the country and investigated the firm.
On the other hand, Japan’s Financial Services Agency (FSA) issued a warning against Binance last month, stating that the exchange is not registered to operate its business in the country.
In addition, Binance announced last month that it was shutting down its crypto business in Ontario, Canada, after the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) accused the exchange and many other cryptocurrency trading platforms of failing to comply with regulations.
Binance has also been facing investigations by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) over issues associating the exchange with tax offences and money laundering activities.
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