Earlier today, bloomberg reported that one of the top exchanges in south Korea Urbit were raided today by the Korean authorities for reasons yet to be revealed.
The raiders were said to have searched the offices on Thursday and Friday. Officials linked to the exchange have declined to give any comment on the matter. CNBC’s cryptocurrency host tweeted about the incident:
South Korea has been cracking down on the cryptocurrency industry to combat excessive speculation and illegal activities such as money laundering, part of a push by governments around the world to rein in digital currency markets. Over the past few months Korean authorities have raided several smaller crypto venues, outlawed initial coin offerings and banned minors, foreigners and financial institutions from domestic exchanges.
Before the clampdown, South Korea was something of a ground zero for the global crypto-mania. Volume on local exchanges soared at the end of last year, with Bitcoin and other tokens fetching large premiums in the country relative to international markets. The boom alarmed officials including Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon, who said that cryptocurrencies might corrupt the nation’s youth. Trading activity and prices have since tumbled as authorities tightened restrictions.