ChangeNOW has been on the market for more than a year now and has earned a reputation of a reliable service with great rates and an amazing support team. We have made a good amount of partnerships with big exchanges, wallets, and exchange aggregators.
We can say that our service has come a long way: what used to be a tiny anonymous exchanger is now a big resource with more than 150 supported coins. We have also partnered with a service which allows fiat-to-crypto purchases, are constantly connecting additional exchanges and still are far from done.
Our service is constantly growing and ever evolving, and we tend to take the rules and requirements of the market concerning the activity of cryptocurrency services really seriously.
A number of changes has been made; for instance, we had dropped our anonymity back in April and implemented AML/KYC at the same time in order to comply to the requirements of exchanges, regulators, and legal authorities.
We are aware of the fact that for a certain part of the crypto community this might be upsetting, and we understand them completely — we are all children of Satoshi Nakamoto, after all.
However, we’ve always favored fair play, which is why we updated our policies and accepted the new way of life.
We would like to release a statement to keep the community updated on our workflow and the development of our service. We believe it’s our duty to the crypto community as a whole and our clients in particular to be transparent about our operations and to let everyone know what’s going on under the hood, so to say; this is especially relevant in the light of current events, that have shown us that we need to provide our customers with more information about ChangeNOW.
So, here’s the matters that are taking place at the time of writing this:
One of our customers has been carrying out a full-blown defamation campaign to harm ChangeNOW’s reputation and ruin our operations.
As a service, we are constantly growing, subsequently attracting more and more attention. We do our best to reply to every tweet and every single message we get, since we find it really great that the community trusts us and is willing to discuss our platform.
Unfortunately, this amount of attention means that trolls are bound to show up. We can’t stand it when our clients have problems and/or misunderstandings, therefore we try our hardest in order to make our platform as transparent as possible.
Let’s get back to AML and KYC for a little bit.
KYC stands for Know Your Customer. AML is for Anti-Money Laundering.
Cryptocurrencies are often considered to be used for illegal operations that allow you to withdraw money from the shadows. In order to prevent this, it is necessary to take measures to ensure customer verification and security of financial transactions.
KYC/AML policy is used in many countries. The main scope of its usage are the activities related to the conduct of questionable transactions.
States are doing everything possible to control and limit the activities of such organizations, and to introduce them into the framework of the law. The KYC/AML policy remains the most common method for this. Its application convinces the regulatory authorities of the absolute legality of the transaction carried out by you.
Thus, you confirm that you are a law-abiding citizen and the state has no reason to address any claims towards you.
You can read some info on KYC and AML here:
ChangeNOW’s KYC procedure is no different from that of any other crypto exchanger.
Our risk management system can define a transaction as suspicious based on a certain set of criteria, among which are the size of a transaction, the wallet address, the funds’ origin, etc.
When the RMS sends us a suspicious transaction alert, we handle the case manually. Our support team does their best to make the procedure as quick and painless for the client as possible.
Here’s how it goes:
As we’ve already stated, each KYC case is handled individually. We will apply a set of standard procedures to our KYC clients, among which are asking a client to send a minimal set of documents that will allow us to confirm their identity and provide the source of funds. If we still have questions to the client, we might ask them for a face-to-face conversation via a video call.
This procedure is the best practice around the market and most reputable exchanges, exchangers, and other crypto-related services follow it. We in particular have several KYC cases a month, and usually they tend to get resolved quickly (mostly because our clients are great!)
So, why are we telling you all this?
We have decided to make this information public in order to give the community some insight on what we have already done so that the entire process is more understandable and transparent; also, we want to get our company’s position across.
Without a doubt, we are deeply chagrined by the fact that one client has been trying his best to ruin our lives.
We are ready to admit that our transparency policy is still a work in progress regarding the KYC procedure: we have expanded our FAQ, adding a special section on AML and KYC (available here) as well as a notification and a link to our AML/KYC info. As we grow, we are going to add more tweaks and features to to our website for convenience of our users.
Some people might really do have things to hide, and, as we respect their privacy, we believe that such clients have the right to be informed about the fact that they might be asked for identification.
We aren’t going to keep this client’s funds. They’re stored on a cold wallet created specifically for his case.
We are going to continue our operations as honestly, transparently, and conveniently for those of our clients who, just like us, respect the law and are ready to follow the rules of the market.
We won’t let shady blackmailers spoil our and our customers’ joy from the crypto market’s development and are ready to do whatever it takes to make sure the market is free of crooks.
What about the case described in this statement and what are we planning to do next?
The client in question is surely going to continue his activities on the Internet.
We, in turn, are preparing legal claims which we are going to submit to Interpol, Europol, and other authorities, along with the info we have on the client and the cold wallet address on which the funds are kept for the time being. After that we are going to wait for their official reply. In no circumstances are we going to keep this user’s funds for ourselves.
ChangeNOW is going to keep the community updated on the situation because we stand for all things that are good and against all things that are bad.