Since gaining PSAN (digital asset service provider) registration in France in early May, Binance has been much more transparent with its French clients.
Those who want to know what their contract with Binance consists of can easily consult their general conditions of use (CGU), available in French.
A final modification was made on June 17, as can be read here. While it is not possible to know what changes have been made since that date, a Binance spokesperson confirmed to BFM Crypto that the T&Cs were published in French after the registration. They are self explanatory for users.
For example, in the “suspension” section of a user’s account, Binance explains that it can suspend, freeze, or block a client’s funds for “any reason,” as first stated. I observe cryptocurrency publisher DocMarmott.
Fight against money laundering
The regulatory requirements related to the implementation of the asset freezing mechanism, which apply, among other things, to both registered PSANs and banking actors, are specified in the joint guidelines of the General Directorate of the Treasury and prudential supervision and resolution (ACPR).
Therefore, Binance can freeze or suspend the accounts of its users in case of suspicion. This provision is intended to cover account freezing “for legal and regulatory reasons,” Binance told BFM Crypto, citing asset seizure orders by courts, an asset freeze for anti-money laundering reasons. and the financing of terrorism but also “to protect customers, for example in the event of cyberattacks or theft.”
If the obligations are incumbent on all PSANs, it is the term used “for any reason” that is in question, as DocMarmott points out.
For comparison, some PSAN players more accurately list the reasons why they can use these measures.
Paymium may decide to close a customer account and terminate the T&C “without having to give reasons, notification, paperwork or compensation for the benefit of the customer in the event of violation of these T&C, in the event of a court decision requiring it to do so, events of force majeure, in case of inappropriate behavior of the client in front of the Paymium team or on social networks (slander, defamation, accusation, insults, etc.) or in case of suspected fraud In the latter case, it is the responsibility of the client demonstrate their good faith and the absence of fraud. Fraud or non-compliance with these T&C may give rise to legal proceedings”, can be read on their site.
Similarly, the French platform Coinhouse has listed 7 specific reasons (among which again non-compliance with the fight against money laundering) that can push its “compliance and risk management department” to suspend or block the account of a client.
The “suspension” section in the Binance T&Cs is more similar to the T&Cs of its international competitors, such as American Coinbase or Kraken.
“You acknowledge that Coinbase’s decision to take certain actions, including limiting access to, suspending, or closing your account for any reason in our sole discretion, may be based on privacy criteria important to security and data management protocols. Coinbase risks”, we can read in these modified TOS on August 18.
The same goes for Kraken.
“We may, in our sole discretion and without liability to you, with or without notice, suspend your access to all or part of our Services. We may terminate your access to the Services in our sole discretion, immediately and without notice, and remove or disable your Kraken account and all associated information and files in that account without liability to you, including, for example, for your breach of any of these terms,” its site reads. .
End of certain commercial services in France
Also, since the beginning of August, French Binance clients can no longer use certain trading products, in particular futures, options or leveraged tokens. The company had informed its customers a month earlier.
“As Binance constantly re-evaluates its product and service offerings to comply with local regulations, we will be making changes to the following products for users residing in France: Futures, Options, Leveraged Tokens, Binance Earnings (Double Investment),” he detailed. Binance. .
In its statement, Binance explains that it takes such a measure to adapt to French regulations. In fact, the sale of derivative products (including those with crypto assets as the underlying) requires authorization as an Investment Service Provider (ISP), which PSAN registration alone does not allow.
“We are committed to the long-term development of our industry and have always strived to bring new opportunities and innovative products to the market. Binance constantly reviews its product offerings and activities, based on user demand, regulatory requirements in evolution and future opportunities, to determine changes and improvements,” a Binance spokesperson explained when asked what the impact of such a move is now on their business. .
Binance, which claims to have 120 million users, does not disclose its number of French clients.
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