Regulator takes action against two B.C. cryptocurrency platforms

At issue are the Nanaimo-based ezBtc.ca and the Vancouver-based Einstein Exchange

Bitcoin buttons are displayed on a table at the Inside Bitcoins conference in Berlin on Feb. 12, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Frank Jordans

Bitcoin buttons are displayed on a table at the Inside Bitcoins conference in Berlin on Feb. 12, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Frank Jordans

The B.C. Securities Commission is investigating complaints against cryptocurrency exchange ezBtc and taking court action to protect customers of crypto-asset trading platform Einstein Exchange — as the websites for both exchanges have stopped loading.

A spokeswoman for the regulator says in an e-mail that it has received several complaints about Nanaimo-based ezBtc.ca, and is commenting publicly because “customer assets are at risk.”

Separately, the commission said Monday that it has received numerous complaints about customers being unable to access their assets on the Vancouver-based Einstein Exchange. A lawyer representing the platform told the commission on Oct. 31 that it planned to shut down within 30 to 60 days “due to a lack of profit.”

The provincial regulator added that on Nov. 1 it applied to the Supreme Court for an order to appoint an interim receiver to protect any assets of Einstein Exchange. The court granted the application and appointed Grant Thornton LLP as interim receiver.

The news comes after the demise of Vancouver-based exchange QuadrigaCX, which sought creditor protection after its founder and chief executive died suddenly late last year leaving its employees unable to locate millions of dollars worth of cryptocurrency.

READ MORE: Widow of QuadrigaCX founder to hand over most assets in settlement

The commission says that to date, no crypto-asset trading platforms have been authorized to operate by the provincial regulator, and do not have the same investor protections as authorized companies.

READ MORE: Cryptocurrency exchange CEO who suddenly died leaves Kelowna house in will

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Sarah Simpson
Sarah Simpson Column: Home is where you know your neighbours

My mom has lived at that address for 43 years.

A rockfall closed Finlayson Arm Road and West Shore Parkway on Friday (March 5) afternoon. (Twitter/BC Transportation)
UPDATED: Malahat reopens following rockfall

Section of Trans-Canada Highway was scheduled for intermittent closures today for rock scaling work

In years past in-person ceremonies have been held for International Women’s Day. This year the observance is going online on Monday, March 8, 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. (file photo)
Virtual ceremony for Women’s Day in Cowichan on Monday

Audrey George, manager of the Ts’i’ts’uwatul’ Lelum assisted living facility, will be keynote speaker.

North Cowichan councillor Rob Douglas is advocating for a pilot project that would see the forest industry on Vancouver Island and the coast managed regionally. (File photo)
N. Cowichan councillor continues push for regional management of forestry

North Cowichan councillor wants pilot project established

The James C Richardson Pipe Band marches in a Remembrance Day parade on Nov. 11, 2019 in Chilliwack. Wednesday, March 10 is International Bagpipe Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of March 7 to 13

International Bagpipe Day, Wash Your Nose Day and Kidney Day are all coming up this week

More than ever before, as pandemic conditions persist, the threat of data breaches and cyberattacks continues to grow, according to SFU professor Michael Parent. (Pixabay photo)
SFU expert unveils 5 ways the COVID-19 pandemic has forever changed cybersecurity

Recognizing these changes is the first in a series of steps to mitigate them once the pandemic ends, and before the next: Michael Parent

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Kevin Haughton is the founder/technologist of Courtenay-based Clearflo Solutions. Scott Stanfield photo
Islander aims Clearflo clean drinking water system at Canada’s remote communities

Entrepreneur $300,000 mobile system can produce 50,000 litres of water in a day, via solar energy

Malawian police guard AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines after the shipment arrived in Lilongwe, Malawi, Friday March 5, 2021. Canada is expecting its first shipments of AstraZeneca vaccine next week. (Associated Press/Thoko Chikondi)
B.C.’s daily COVID-19 cases climb to 634 Friday, four more deaths

Currently 255 people in hospital, 66 in intensive care

A crashed helicopter is seen near Mt. Gardner on Bowen Island on Friday March 5, 2021. Two people were taken to hospital in serious but stable condition after the crash. (Irene Paulus/contributed)
2 people in serious condition after helicopter goes down on Bowen Island

Unclear how many passengers aboard and unclear where the helicopter was going

Surrey Pretrial in Newton. (Photo: Tom Zytaruk)
B.C. transgender inmate to get human rights hearing after being held in mostly male jail

B.C. Human Rights Tribunal member Amber Prince on March 3 dismissed the pretrial’s application to have Makayla Sandve’s complaint dismissed

Supporters rally outside court as Pastor James Coates of GraceLife Church is in court to appeal bail conditions, after he was arrested for holding day services in violation of COVID-19 rules, in Edmonton, Alta., on Thursday March 4, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
‘Law remains valid:’ Pastor accused of violating health orders to remain in jail

The Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms is representing the pastor

The Netflix logo on an iPhone. B.C. delayed imposing sales tax on digital services and sweetened carbonated beverages as part of its response to COVID-19. Those taxes take effect April 1, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Matt Rourke
B.C. applies 7% sales tax on streaming, vaping, sweet drinks April 1

Measures from 2020 budget were delayed due to COVID-19

Most Read