Nigeria Targets Binance for User Data in Crypto Crackdown

Nigerian flag and Binance logo

According to a report by the Financial Times on Tuesday, Nigerian authorities have demanded that Binance, the largest cryptocurrency exchange, produce information on its top 100 Nigerian customers, as well as its full transaction history for the previous six months. Nigeria may seek a $10 billion punishment from Binance as revenge, claiming that they “really messed up” the local economy. According to the police, the cryptocurrency exchange facilitated “illegal transactions” at the expense of the government.

Nigeria Presses Binance for Information

According to a report by the Financial Times on March 13, Nigerian officials are also asking Binance to pay any outstanding tax issues. This request comes amid ongoing discussions between Binance and Nigeria, with the government claiming that Binance’s operations have had a substantial influence on the local currency, the Nigerian naira.

Binance, like other cryptocurrency platforms, has arisen as an alternate way of setting unofficial naira exchange rates amid Nigeria’s economic crisis. President Bola Tinubu’s administration has enacted market-friendly reforms and depreciated the currency to encourage international investment. However, inflation has reached around 30%, causing the government to tighten down on cryptocurrency exchanges.

Furthermore, Bayo Onanuga, the presidential adviser on information and strategy, accused Binance and other cryptocurrency platforms of manipulating the naira, resulting in a significant drop in the local currency. Onanuga urged banning sites such as Binance in the country.

Binance Faces Scrutiny in Nigeria as Central Bank Raises Concerns

Olayemi Cardoso, Nigeria’s Central Bank Governor, revealed that $26 billion has moved through Binance in the last year from unidentified sources, raising worries about the economic implications of cryptocurrency trading. While the Office of the National Security Adviser told Elahe Anjarwalla that law enforcement authorities were working tirelessly on the case, she was disappointed by the British government’s apparent lack of decisive action in supporting her husband, a British citizen.

In response, the Foreign Office acknowledged that it was in contact with local authorities about the British citizen’s imprisonment in Nigeria. Similarly, the US Embassy in Abuja confirmed receiving allegations about the imprisonment of a US person and reaffirmed its commitment to provide necessary assistance.

Author: Simeon

Simeon is a seasoned crypto writer with a passion for exploring the fascinating world of blockchain and digital currencies. With a background in finance and technology, Simeon brings a unique perspective to his writing, delving into the complexities of decentralized finance, cryptocurrency trading, and emerging blockchain projects.