Israeli crypto wallet suddenly cuts off users in apparent exit scam

Users of the Israel-based BT360 cryptocurrency wallet recently woke up, expecting to be able to check on the balances held in the wallet. However, they were only met by a brick wall, as the wallet company suddenly shut down the application and the accompanying website with no warning. Now, users want answers and two central figures at the company are playing the blame game over what went wrong. 

BT360 ceased working on February 12, according to Israeli media outlet Calcalist. When the story broke, Calcalist reached out to the wallet’s owner, Eyal Sadeh, who said that he had fired company CEO Erez Fischler for “irregularities” surrounding how user funds had been managed. As a result of the issues and a subsequent investigation, the wallet and website had to be temporarily suspended; however, he asserted that everything would be restored once the investigation ends. 

That isn’t the story that Fischler offers, though. He told the media outlet that he was innocent and that he had quit the company well ahead of the shutdown. He asserted that he had no access to user accounts and, therefore, couldn’t be responsible for any potential losses. 

The blame game now begins as the investigation tries to unravel the mystery and users wait impatiently. One user, who reportedly had around $50,000 in his wallet, told Decrypt that he had personally met with Fischler last Sunday and was told to “be patient” as he worked on a lawsuit against Sadeh. Several other users are reportedly out hundreds of thousands of dollars. 

Another customer wrote on Facebook, “I put a very high amount of money there. They claimed that in order to send you the coins without a commission, you have to wait six months. It’s been six months and the site is currently inactive.” The same client went to the company’s offices in Midtown Towers in Tel Aviv, and heard winding explanations from its people, and several different versions of the company’s operations and the money that had been deposited.

The truth will ultimately come out, but Fischler was perhaps not the right man for the job. He has had financial and legal trouble in the past, most notably with a failed chocolates business that shut down a few years ago when it went bankrupt. Suppliers and customers accused him of having cheated them and, including selling franchises for stores that didn’t exist. 

Some BT360 users are already skeptical that they will ever see their funds again. One took his complaint to the police and asserts, “I don’t believe I will see the money back. They (BT360) offer various excuses, tell stories, blame each other, lie. People have invested a lot of money, in my estimation, millions of shekels, not only in crypto, but also in things they are marketing, such as real estate transactions that can be done in digital currencies, and loans and crypto savings programs and more. To all the people who were hurt and turned to me, I just say: Go to the police, because only then will there be a mass of people who will require them to do something.”

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