If you’ve been following along with the conversations happening recently with regulators and legislators in the United States, then you are probably aware that cryptocurrencies are having a moment in the spotlight. From presidential tweets to Congressional hearings, there is an intense interest and scrutiny about cryptocurrencies and how they work.
As a result of continued regulatory uncertainty and restrictions in the United States, we have to make some adjustments to our US business in an effort to continue to be compliant and cooperative with US regulations as they currently exist.
What that means, specifically, for Abra users in the United States is that we have to make some system modifications around our smart contract based synthetic assets. As a part of this effort we are migrating any synthetic assets to a native hosted wallet solution. On Abra, these are defined as anything other than Bitcoin (BTC), Ether (ETH), Litecoin (LTC) and Bitcoin Cash (BCH).
Please note: The private keys for any Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, and Ethereum balances will continue to reside with you.
For most US persons, the migration will be seamless and will allow you to continue managing and transacting with most of your assets from the Abra app without interruption. However, during this time some assets may be unavailable to use (exchange, send, and withdraw) for a few minutes while the migration takes place.
Unfortunately, this migration will impact some segments of our US users more directly, as follows:
- US users will no longer be eligible to hold QTUM, BTG, EOS, OMG, SNT after August 29, 2019. US users holding positions in these crypto assets will have to exchange or withdraw their investments from Abra by 11:59 PM EST on August 29, 2019. After that date, any remaining balances in those assets will be converted to Bitcoin in the app.
- After August 29, 2019, New York residents will only be able to hold Bitcoin (BTC), Ether (ETH), Litecoin (LTC) and Bitcoin Cash (BCH) on Abra. New York residents will need to transfer or sell any synthetic holdings by 11:59 PM EST on August 29, 2019. After that date, any remaining balances in those assets will be shown as Bitcoin in the app. Additionally, Abra users from New York will no longer be able to use bank ACH, wire or American express card for deposit/withdraw after Aug 29th, 2019.
To reiterate, these changes will only impact US persons using the Abra app. Our international users will not be impacted by these changes. For further information, see our FAQs or contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
We are proud to be, along with many others in our industry, pushing the frontiers of financial innovation to drive global financial inclusion. However, operating in the United States has become increasingly complex and challenging. Unfortunately, we believe this to be the best course of action at this time. We hope, and look forward to bringing our full offering back to US users in the near future.