On June the 22nd 2018, a cloud miner said their “website will be undergoing maintenance and may be unavailable tomorrow.”
Tomorrow came and went with nothing heard until today when they said they have turned off their miners in an announcement we will later quote in full. They say:
“BTC mining continues being unprofitable, in light of which we would like to inform you that on 18.07.2018 we were forced to start disabling SHA hardware and today, on 20.07.2018, stop the mining service of active SHA-256 contracts.”
Suspicions run high this is an exit scam of sorts, especially considering their near month long silence. Their website apparently had a team page once, but now no longer links to it, with this company seemingly formed in 2015 and registered in London.
Strangely, no directors are shown in the registration documents. A person named Naomie Pearl Jno Paul signs for most of the filings with the companies house, the latest one being in April this year which announced they changed their name from HashCoin to Hashflare.
The CEO appears to be Sergei Potapenko, who also founded Polybius in February last year. According to the Bitcoin Wiki, he founded Hashcoin in 2013.
Hashflare’s team page has disappeared from their website, but of course not from the internet. It looks very much identical to that of Hashcoin, which says they’re an Asics manufacturer.
The facilities themselves are claimed to be in Estonia, Tallin, with the cloud miner often having an English and a Russian version of their communications.
They claimed to have over a million users, although we’ve seen the number of 2.5 million users thrown around, suggesting there are millions of dollars at stake here.
Hashflare has further announced new AML/KYC requirements, even though they seemed to have them implemented already previously, with their full announcement published today stating:
“As you know, the last few months have been a difficult time for the cryptocurrency market, which has also affected the operation of our service.
We have made every possible effort in order to resolve the problem that has arisen – for instance, we have considered a variety of technical solutions, which would have allowed us to lower expenses related to maintenance and electricity.
However, due to the general instability of the market, the actions we have taken could not significantly influence the current situation.
For over a month our users encountered a situation when the payouts were lower than the maintenance fees, resulting in zero accruals to the balance. As of 18.07.2018, the payouts were lower than maintenance for 28 consecutive days.
BTC mining continues being unprofitable, in light of which we would like to inform you that on 18.07.2018 we were forced to start disabling SHA hardware and today, on 20.07.2018, stop the mining service of active SHA-256 contracts in accordance with clause 5.5 of our Terms of Service, which are required to be accepted when creating a purchase and are the basis of concluding the contract.
We expect that the cryptocurrency market situation will stabilize in the nearest future and we will be able to offer our users new advantageous solutions.”