BitBay, a cryptocurrency exchange based out of Estonia, suffered a severe outage that left it unavailable for most of the day. In the early hours of Thursday, the exchange announced on Twitter that it was struggling with a problem in its network that had come from an external service provider. While the exchange didn’t point out which service provider had developed a fault, it explained that it had contacted them and was already working on getting the problem resolved.
However, the exchange didn’t come online for the rest of the day and was only available once, earlier today. While things seem to be back to normal, several users have expressed their concerns about what could have happened – as well as the fact that the exchange doesn’t seem to have addressed what happened.
After BitBay had gone dark, the exchange tried to keep users up to speed, as it provided an update explaining that the problem was more complicated than it initially anticipated. It explained at the time that it would relaunch once the problem was fixed, although the only services available will be to allow traders to place or cancel orders before the exchange’s matching engine becomes functional once more.
The exchange later took to Facebook Livestream, where it tried to calm edge investors by assuring them that all their funds were safe. The exchange went on to ask for a little more trust as it worked to rectify the problems.
Users soon began to get a bit agitated, as the problem didn’t seem like it was getting any resolution. Even with more updates from the firm and repeated assertions that their funds were safe, the exchange’s users continued to ask for more answers and a timeline that would tell them when they could access their funds once more.
Exchanges Have Several Problems to Deal With
The exchange eventually came back, announcing early on Friday morning that it had resolved all of the problems and was back online with its full trading services. While everything seems to be fine, one can imagine why users would be agitated concerning their funds.
A lot of the time, exchanges that encounter hacks and other security breaches tend to go dark and assuage the fears of their customers by keeping them placated as possible.
A great example of this can be found in the case of FCoin, the Chinese crypto exchange that shut down last month. The exchange shut down in February, as users began to suspect that there was something wrong with its operations. The exchange eventually shut down and was unable to refund investors’ cash, and while it has since tried to explain that it isn’t an exit scam, the proof will say otherwise.
Of course, the circumstances surrounding FCoin are a tad different from what BitBay is experiencing. FCoin had a flawed business model from the very beginning, and even the exchange alluded that the circumstances surrounding its folding up were “too complicated to explain.”
However, in a world where security remains the top issue facing cryptocurrencies and their investors, it’s understandable that any exchange malfunction will immediately raise eyebrows.