• LocalBitcoins, a Finland-based peer-to-peer (P2P) cryptocurrency platform, has decided to close down operations after 10 years.
• Customers have 12 months to withdraw their cryptocurrencies from the LocalBitcoins wallet but are advised to do so immediately.
• LocalBitcoins was mentioned among the biggest Bitcoin senders to the Russia-linked exchange Bitzlato, however no cooperation with them was found.
LocalBitcoins Closes Down P2P Crypto Exchange Service
Finland-based peer-to-peer (P2P) cryptocurrency platform LocalBitcoins is shutting down operations after serving its customers for more than 10 years. LocalBitcoins officially announced the termination of services on Feb. 9, citing the tough market conditions of the ongoing cryptocurrency winter.
Withdrawal Period for Customers
LocalBitcoins encouraged all customers to withdraw their crypto assets from the platform, asking them to proceed with withdrawing Bitcoin from the LocalBitcoins wallet. According to the announcement, users can withdraw crypto assets from LocalBitcoins for 12 months. “However, of course, we encourage you to proceed with withdrawing sooner,” the firm noted.
Timeline for Termination
According to the termination timeline, LocalBitcoins will immediately suspend all new registrations from Feb. 9. Trading will be suspended Feb. 16, while after that date users will only be able to login into the wallet to withdraw their funds.
Connection with Bitzlato
LocalBitcoins’ abrupt closure comes soon after the United States Financial Crimes Enforcement Network mentioned the platform among the biggest Bitcoin senders to the Russia-linked exchange Bitzlato.. U.S authorities launched a major enforcement action against Bitzlato accusing it of money laundering and allegedly facilitating circumvention of sanctions against Russia.. Jukka Blomberg chief marketing officer at localbitcoiins denied any kind of cooperation or relationship with Bitzlato in a statement made in January 2021 .