South Korea’s cryptocurrency exchanges are reviewing the mandates issued by the government last week and are implementing the changes in their workability to comply with the government policies. Moreover, the exchanges are in practice to abstain some customers from trading in cryptocurrencies, which is why the exchanges have eliminated issuing new virtual accounts as per the requisites of the regulators’ real-name requirements.
The official mandates
In the last month of the year 2017, the South Korean government made several announcements announcing the viable cryptocurrency regulations. The reports in the media circulated it as the “emergency” regulatory measures and then it was followed by some other rules.
At present the Korean digital currency market is majorly operated by four exchanges; Bithumb, Upbit, Coinone, and Korbit. Bithumb since long is considered as the number one and the largest crypto exchange by volume in the country. However, the newcomer Upbit has registered higher 24-hour volumes in the month of December. Kakao Corporation, which owns the country’s most popular chat app, backs Upbit Kakao Talk.
Subsequent to the announcements made about the new regulations, the four exchanges began amending their terms of service. The new mandates state that they will not offer services to minors as well as dealings with non-Korean residents will be prohibited as well apart from policies pertaining the issue of new virtual accounts. These accounts were issued by banks for the exchanges to dispense to their customers for anonymous KRW deposits and trading.
About the Minors and Non-Korean Residents
Upbit instantly posted a notice regarding the discontinuation of its services for minors. Now all of the exchanges have notified that minors who are under 19 years of age can no longer employ their services and the existing minor will have to withdraw money from the platform. The exchanges have updated the terms of service, changing from “under 14 years old to under 19 years old.
Coinone issued a similar notice, stating that trading is limited for “underaged-minors and non-Korean-residents,” expounding that all of its services will no longer be accessible to them.
The policy change on New Virtual Bank Accounts
Bithumb has put up an explanation on its website that the issuance of new virtual bank accounts has been abstained as per the government’s regulation, which is a “requirement of real name verification for cryptocurrency transactions.”Presently, Shinhan Bank and Nonghyup Bank work with Bithumb for the virtual account services. The issuance of new Shinhan Bank virtual accounts was suspended on Friday and the issuance by Nonghyup Bank the subsequent day.
Upbit also conversed with its users that “in order to comply with the government’s policy on self-certified accounts, the issuance of virtual accounts for Upbit new subscribers will cease from January 1, 2018.” Nevertheless, the members who already have virtual accounts will be able to make all transactions without change.
Coinone have written on its website that, “Virtual account issuing for cryptocurrency trading will be closed temporarily” starting on December 29, 2017, in order “to apply Korean government’s policy for the real-name system.”
On the very day, another chief exchange, Korbit, abstained the issuance of new virtual accounts by stating that Shinhan Bank currently provides the exchange with virtual account services. The exchange added, that it will continue to work carefully with the regulators and banking organizations to arrange a fully-compatible platform that securely processes KRW deposits and withdrawals as per the new regulation