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BitOasis and Investing in Crypto from the United Arab Emirates

 What you need to know and 5 important questions to ask when choosing your trading platform

How we protect and safeguard our customers’ interests and assets is BitOasis’ top priority. Here are some facts about us that we feel are important for you to know, as well as 5 important questions that you should be asking if you invest through other platforms from the United Arab Emirates.

Before we dive in, a quick recap of how we have responded to recent events so far:

  • On November 12th, we clarified that BitOasis has no commercial or business exposure to FTX or Alameda, and that recent events had no effect on our business or on our ability to provide you with a safe and secure trading experience whatsoever. You can read more about it in this post.
  • On November 13th, we took the decision to delist FTT (FTX Token) from our platform to protect our customers. Please check out our announcement for details about the decision and the timeline going forward.

Some key facts on what we have been doing, and will continue to do to keep you and your funds and assets safe:

  1. WE ARE REGULATED
  • BitOasis operates its virtual asset brokerage and custodian platform under an approval issued by the Dubai Virtual Assets Regulatory Authority on March 28th, 2022 in accordance with the Dubai Virtual Asset Law (2022) that was issued on 28 February 2022. 
  • On September 23rd, 2021 we became the first virtual asset platform to be registered with the United Arab Emirates’ Financial Intelligence Unit under the United Arab Emirates Anti-Money Laundering Law, to which we report all suspicious transactions. 
  1. YOUR FUNDS ARE HELD WITH LICENSED BANKS
  • We only hold customer funds in segregated client money accounts with licensed banks –  including UAE banks licensed by the United Arab Emirates’ Central Bank. 
  • This means that not only are your funds held separately from our funds at all times and are therefore protected – we are also one of very few platforms that hold customer funds with licensed banks in the United Arab Emirates. 
  1. WE KEEP YOUR VIRTUAL ASSETS SAFE AND SECURE
  • We do not lend, pledge, or trade your virtual assets. Our customers’ virtual assets are secured and stored in wallet infrastructure powered by a best-in-class regulated virtual asset custodian (BitGo). This storage solution incorporates multiple layers of security and ensures safekeeping of all virtual assets at all times.
  • Our primary custodian extends comprehensive insurance coverage over virtual assets that you hold with BitOasis.
  1. ALL ASSETS ARE 1:1 BACKED
  • Due to the aforementioned arrangements, all your assets held by us, virtual or fiat, are always 1:1 backed. We do not operate on a fractional reserve basis. 
  1. WE SEEK INDEPENDENT VERIFICATION FOR ADDED CUSTOMER PROTECTION
  • Investors and customers have every right to request that virtual asset platforms conduct independent third-party verifications of how they hold your assets. 
  • We undertake independent third-party reviews of how we hold customer assets and are considering the best way to initiate further reviews in response to recent events in order to provide proof of reserve reports to you on a regular basis. We will keep our customers updated as soon as these arrangements are finalised. 
  1. WE ARE HERE TO TALK TO YOU, ANYTIME, IN YOUR LANGUAGE
  • We were the first platform in the region to provide 24/7 customer service in Arabic and English. 

If you trade in virtual assets on platforms other than BitOasis from the United Arab Emirates, here are 5 questions you should ask: 

  • Does your platform hold a license or approval from a United Arab Emirates based regulator?
  • Does your platform hold client money on a segregated basis including in accounts with banks licensed by the United Arab Emirates Central Bank?
  • Is your platform registered with and does it report to the United Arab Emirates Financial Intelligence Unit? 
  • Does your platform lend, pledge or trade your assets and/or earn any yield from them?
  • Has your platform been subject to any regulatory investigations, fines, or bans in other markets for operating in breach of laws or regulations in the market? 

While recent events have no doubt been damaging, they also provide the entire crypto community with an opportunity to reflect on the progress made so far and the fundamentals that made that progress possible. The GCC and wider Middle East and North Africa, our home, was the fastest growing region for crypto adoption in 2021-2022. This growth places an incredible responsibility on virtual asset platforms that serve our region. Expectations are high and we will live up to them. Now is the time to raise the bar for the entire industry – that’s what drove us to become a founding member of the Middle East, Asia and Africa Crypto & Blockchain Association (MEAACBA), to be at the forefront of conversations between operators and regulators in order to protect our customers’ interest. We are here to have that conversation, and we are here to raise that bar. We will always be a partner to you that is open to conversation. Please feel free to reach out through any of our usual channels if you have any questions or suggestions on the points above.