28 April 2018 | Susan Toby | Dynamic Mix

There are numerous crypto exchanges and wallets around and some of us have had success using some and some of us have experienced challenges. I would, however, take a bet that most of us have faced issues at some point when we started in the crypto world . It’s really not that hard to encounter challenges.

Do you get that uncomfortable feeling in your gut when you are about to undertake a transaction? Do you check and double check to verify that the address that you are sending to is correct? Do you check to see which wallet it’s going to?

Even the most experienced Cryptonites have lost money somewhere from being scammed, dealing with unscrupulous exchanges and so on. This article is not about that, but rather a story about how an exchange, which you had faith in, can really screw you.

I was first introduced to Coinjar last year, when I became interested in ICO’s and cryptos. I thought Coinjar offered a great service where I could transfer money from my bank and then use it to do with as I wished. It also offers the user the opportunity of sending money back to your bank which is very convenient. Over time they have added extra wallets and I believe they done very well for themselves as a Melbourne startup which has moved to London to scale and cuurently shows trades over a billion.

I was more than happy to recommend this exchange to others, however recent events I have encountered have changed my mind and I bring this to your attention so that when when choosing an exchange/wallet to store and transfer your hard earned funds you thoroughly examine the company you are dealing with.

On the Coinjar website it states, as an example, how easy it is to use Coinjar. Copywriter and Creative Entrepreneur, Crystal Wong states:

“I was on my last ¥1000 (AUD$10) in a ridiculously expensive city with two cancelled debit cards. I purchased Bitcoin from my Australian bank account and with CoinJar, withdrew and paid my bills in Yen. It gave me instant access to my money.”

Who are you kidding Crystal?

Coinjar does not give you instant access to your money. I recently sent funds to my Coinjar account in two payments. The first was just over a thousand dollars followed by not even half of that sent to Coinjar, not huge sums in the scheme of things.

Guess what, I couldn’t get access to it for 7 days…worse than a bank. This is what they wrote:

Having reduced the amount and trying again nothing changed so I contacted them. The reason they gave me, and its posted on their site:

is because it relates to ‘chargeback and anti money laundering’.

Can you imagine my small amount of money relating to money laundering? Laughable, if it wasn’t so frustrating.

Having repeatedly contacted the support team and one of the founders, Asher Tan, via tweet, as you can’t ring them, the response I got was,

“our security team has blocked you and if you fill out our Customer Identification Form we will remove the block”.


Excuse me, what was the KYC for? You have my image, you have my document images and you need this for what reason? No response……. Even my tweet on Asher Tan’s tweet site was never answered.

So what’s this Customer Identification Form all about?

As we know, globally regulations are tightening up. This is to protect us from ourselves as we are obviously incapable. Sure there are scammers and people willing to take advantage, but at the end of the day, we have to take responsibility for ourselves. Laws are put in place to support us not to imprison us.

When reviewing this document I was shocked to see what I was being asked to fill out. On page two, it asks what the source of your funds are, what your trading activities are and so on. As a share trader I have never had to fill out such a detailed form. Isn’t the point of Crypto having responsibility for your own funds and making your own decisions and not having your privacy invaded?

When asked to fill out a response to whether service was good or bad what do you think I wrote? Did I get a good resolution? How would you rate them, GOOD or BAD?

What were they doing with MY money? Asher Tan has a financial background so I ask him, what were you doing with my funds for 7 days, when you prevented me from accessing it?

In an interview with Monty Hamilton at Telstra Digital, the cofounders said:

Our focus is on end to end solutions for consumers to manage and use their bitcoin’. Since those days they have expanded their offering, but their end to end solutions leave a lot to be desired.

Having finally received my funds exactly on the 7th day, I then encountered another issue. I know I sound like a broken record, but honestly people, you need to be aware of what this company is doing, as it’s not good business practice. Having been a business consultant for over 20 years these guys need to look at best practice and what they are doing is certainly not that. Alienating your customers is not the way to go or is it that you have become so big you don’t care?

I decided after researching and talking to friends, to get involved in an investment pool. I had a little funds left which I then sent, following the instructions on site, however it never arrived at its destination and Etherscan showed zero transactions associated to my public wallet address. Again, i returned back to Coinjar support to find out what was going on. Larry from support then sends this message….

Thank you for getting in touch.

At this stage, I’m afraid CoinJar does not support outgoing Ethereum payments to ICO addresses. Any payment to ICO addresses will fail to confirm on the blockchain once sent. Even if the transaction is successful, any tokens sent back to your CoinJar sending address will not be credited.

Before sending an outgoing Ethereum transactions using CoinJar, there are three checkboxes presented, one of which asks you to confirm that you are not sending to an ICO address:

“ICOs” are not supported. I understand that CoinJar will not distribute any tokens if I send to a crowdsale (ICO) address.

The Engineering Team are able to recover funds sent to ICO address, but unfortunately this comes at a high fee ($200 AUD + transaction costs) due to the engineering work required.

Let me know if you’d like the Engineering Team to proceed with this retrieval.

I wrote back saying I was aware that I could not send to an ICO and it had been a genuine error as I had the two addresses up, the metamask and other and I made a mistake. It happens.

I had also taken the opportunity to speak to some IT people I know, who said that the transaction would revert and ETH would just be retuned to my account, not an issue. Phew that was a relief. I also read on site about the return of funds, and nowhere does it say anything other than a manual return must be done by support, so I was shocked to learn that there would be a 200 + transaction fee.

So based on what they are stealing, and I use this word because that’s what it is, plain and blatant outright theft, a simple manual revert will cost me over half of what I sent because of a simple error. Larry the support guy says,

‘ Because manual cryptocurrency recovery requires us to remove one of the members of our Engineering Team from their scheduled tasks, we do require reimbursement for the time spent on recovery’.

Minutes not hours it takes to do this revert transaction, advice taken from IT friends. Therefore 200 + Transaction fee are you kidding?

Am I disillusioned with this company. Would you be? I say to all you ‘Lovers of Liberty’ don’t allow companies to bully you. Speak out. Hopefully you will be heard and they will make changes to work with you, not against you. To the Coinjar Founders I say…

Join us!

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