Wallet Service and Platform Update
We have been cautious about providing updates prematurely regarding the security breach of November 19, 2017 before having gathered sufficient information and taking substantial action to address the issue. We understand that doing so raised some questions and doubts throughout the community. While we still cannot disclose much about ongoing investigations, we can provide the following information about actions which have taken place over the past month to recover, secure, and move forward from the security breach.
Immediately following the breach, Tether reached out and coordinated with exchange partners to block any use of the stolen Tethers on partner platforms, through use of a special release of the integrators wallet/daemon. After advice and consultation with the Omni Foundation (the underlying technology upon which Tether Tokens are built and managed), a new feature was developed by the foundation that, after enabled, allowed us to freeze and blacklist stolen Tethers. In this way, Omni could prevent them from being used at a protocol level. This action was not taken lightly and has allowed Tether to safeguard against any further potential disruptions to the ecosystem in an effort to protect the entire community.
As of December 19, 2017, Tether is enabling limited wallet services, allowing users to login and start withdrawing any funds held in their wallets, as needed. The system is still processing a backlog of transactions sent after the original Nov 19th shutdown, so any user deposits sent in the past month should become available and accessible in their respective wallets over the course of a few days.
In light of the events of the past month, we are in the process of developing and building a new platform, and we will be slowly phasing out and discontinuing the current wallet services and all old addresses. To prevent against possible loss of funds, users should not attempt to deposit any funds to their old wallet or deposit addresses. Additionally, while the new system is being built, we will be disabling new signups on the platform.
Until we are able to migrate to the new platform, the purchase or sale of Tether will not be possible directly through tether.to. For the time being, though, we invite you to use the services of any one of a dozen global exchanges to acquire or dispose of Tethers for either USD or other cryptocurrencies. Such exchanges and other qualified corporate customers can contact Tether directly to arrange for creation and redemption. Sadly, however, we cannot create or redeem tether for any U.S.-based customers at this time.
Update to Terms of Service
We are in the process of updating the Terms of Service for Tether based on feedback from the community. Among other things, we will clarify the language surrounding our rights to refuse redemption (or creation) to certain parties. The Tether Terms of Service have been widely misunderstood as meaning that Tethers are not redeemable at Tether’s whim or that Tethers are not backed by their underlying assets. This is false. Absent a reasonable legal justification not to redeem Tethers, and provided that you are a fully verified customer of Tether, your Tethers are freely redeemable. However, we must and will take steps to prevent terrorists and other bad actors from trafficking in Tethers. Accordingly, where, for example, a redemption of Tether will violate applicable laws, that redemption will continue to be prohibited.
Friedman LLP continues to work diligently toward a full balance sheet audit as of September 30, 2017. We understand that the public is anxiously awaiting the completion of this process, but it cannot be rushed and we are not Friedman’s only customer. Moreover, the amount of due diligence that is being performed by Friedman is substantial. We (and Friedman LLP) are committed to this process in our quest to deliver on a new standard of transparency in our industry. In the meantime, we wish to once more state, very clearly, that Tether Limited does, in fact, carry USD bank balances in the amounts stated here at banks at which we have accounts. Any suggestion to the contrary is uninformed and baseless.
The Tether Team