Following the latest wave of sanctions from the European Union, bitcoin exchange Binance is enforcing stricter Know Your Customer (KYC) controls for Russian users.
Binance limits crypto services to Russian users
Following the fifth package of EU anti-Russian restrictions, Binance today announced in a blog post that it will limit services to “Russian nationals or natural persons residing in Russia, or legal entities established in Russia with crypto holdings exceeding $10,900. Users who fit this description will be required to submit proof of address. According to the blog post, users who now have to undergo checks under the new restrictions will be placed in “withdrawal-only mode,” meaning no deposits or trades will be allowed.
Russians living outside the country who can provide proof of address, as well as those living in Russia but with less than €10,000, will not be affected by the changes. In addition, Russian nationals, as well as natural and legal persons in the country, whose assets exceed the threshold and who open futures and derivatives positions, will have 90 days to close them. They will not be allowed to create new posts.
Punishments by the EU
On April 8, the EU announced its latest set of sanctions. It included crypto wallets with ties to Russia as a way to “fill in potential loopholes” in the broader set of sanctions imposed on Russia amid its weeks-long invasion of neighboring Ukraine. Ukrainian Deputy Minister of Digital Transformation Alex Bornyakov welcomed Binance’s changes in a tweet.
Binance had even planned to expand its services in Russia earlier this year, hoping for a phased regulatory approach from Russia that could influence the approach of its neighboring countries, but the recent invasion appears to have slowed those plans.