Social media is experiencing an influx of outrage from Nigerians parading around the hashtag, #BinanceStopScamming. This bitterness is the result of Nigerians claiming their accounts associated with the lead crypto exchange, Binance, are being withheld from them.
A handful of users think this treatment from Binance is intentional and directed toward Nigerians themselves. Assumptions aside, the common distress reported among Nigerians is the inability to access funds affiliated with these accounts.
Nigerian Twitter account, Brown-Mi, complained on January 26th, “It is enough, I am a victim. My account has been frozen for about 4 months now with over $500k, mostly alt coins. Is it a crime to be an African?”. One Nigerian Twitter user expressed similar distress with her account having been unresponsive for ten months with no success in reaching Binance Customer Support.
Assessing the Issue
Broad-scale, Africans, and most especially Nigerians, are the only ones with these complaints. Are the rumors true? Is Binance treating this region differently? If so, for what reason?
Binance is prepared to answer these questions and has given a response to the outcry. There is a comprehensive list of reasons why certain accounts may have been restricted.
Binance comes forward and states in a tweet, “At times, we proactively restrict accounts to protect users’ funds. Other times, we have to restrict accounts at the request of law enforcement. If your account has been restricted at the request of a law enforcement agency, we will send you details of who to contact for the next steps”.
Binance has provided users with a form to submit if there are issues: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdnaUUvLumKRcfF3bkHVw_ySExV4w2NrpY0GVQvv2hbsmnYxw/viewform
Nigerians’ ability to tap into Binance has been a form of financial freedom and assistance throughout many harsh economic seasons. There is a large community of Binance users in Nigeria, it comes as no surprise that the hashtag, #BinanceStopScamming, would result in an initiative to rectify the issue.
One tweet reads, “Crypto has been an escape route for several young Nigerians including me, due to the failure of Nigeria to cater for her teeming youths. Binance shouldn’t add to our problems, we already have enough!”.
There are high hopes for Binance as they navigate this escalating issue with one of their substantial user communities.