Uphold, a New York-based cryptocurrency exchange, has announced that it is exiting the Venezuelan market. The company, which has already had problems with users in the country in the past, requiring account shutdowns and KYC controls that some users deemed excessive, declared that its withdrawal from Venezuela has to do with “the complexity of complying with U.S. sanctions.”
Uphold abandoned the Venezuelan market,
Uphold, a New York-headquartered cryptocurrency exchange and stock trading platform, has announced that it will no longer serve customers registered in Venezuela. The company, which serves more than 184 countries according to its own data, claims that the current situation between Venezuela and the United States is to blame for this decision.
In an email sent to the exchange’s Venezuelan customers, Uphold declared:
We are very sorry to inform you that Uphold has decided to withdraw from Venezuela due to the increasing complexity of complying with US sanctions. Venezuela was one of the first countries to adopt Uphold and we were very excited to serve our clients in this country. We are very reluctant to take this step.
However, the company also stated that it hopes to return to the Venezuelan market as soon as conditions are right. The company is not allowing new users from Venezuela to open accounts and urges Venezuelan users to withdraw funds by July 31 through bank accounts linked to their Uphold accounts or through cryptocurrency trading. In addition, accounts with zero balances will be automatically closed by the exchange.
This is not the first time that Venezuelan exchanges have reported difficulties and problems operating in Venezuela: back in 2019, some Venezuelan users lost access to their accounts and reported to the Instagram group that they were subjected to unreasonable requests for data about their transactions on the platform. Some usersalso reported that their accounts were closedwithout further explanation.
Some users who now believe Uphold’s word and are trying to withdraw funds have complainedabout the “regular revision” status of their accounts on the social media platform. It is unclear whether this is a measure that applies to all Venezuelans on the platform or only some due to unpublished details.
Other services and wallets are also targeting Venezuelans for sanctions. Infura, one of the companies that provides endpoint connectivity to Metamask, a popular Web3 wallet, in March disabled Venezuelan users from accessing the wallet due to a misconfiguration stemming from a US sanctions directive.
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