Bitcoin exchange LocalBitcoins is currently experiencing a lengthy outage brought about by server hardware issues. However, the exchange has reassured its users that all bitcoins are safe and sound.
LocalBitcoins confirmed the outage in a blog post on Sunday with a brief statement:
“Our server had gone down yesterday. The reason might be hardware failure. We are researching the issue and trying to get the site back up.”
The company also tweeted that no bitcoins or data had been lost in the outage:
Trying to get service back up. Can’t provide ETA yet. All btc is safe, all data is safe, this is not a security breach but a server problem.
— LocalBitcoins.com (@LocalBitcoins) May 18, 2014
A LocalBitcoins team member confirmed that no data has been lost, but he pointed out that the exchange needs to make some “serious improvements” to its server infrastructure.
The exchange later tweeted that the problem has been identified early this morning and that it is hardware related. The exchange estimated that it would take 2 to 4 hours to restore services, but five hours later no progress has been reported and the site was still down.
LocalBitcoins has suffered numerous outages in the past, but this time the issue is taking longer to resolve than on previous occasions.
The exchange suffered a server breach two weeks ago, which was quickly resolved. However, although no data was compromised, LocalBitcoins described the attack as “very dangerous”.
Thanks to past issues with failed exchanges, the bitcoin community tends to be edgy when it comes to outages and downtime. Hence, the reaction to the the exchanges latest problem has been swift and negative.
A few threads have popped up on reddit and bitcoin forums since the site went down. Many users used them to vent their frustrations, but they also used them to look for alternative services.
As the outage goes on, speculation mounts and so do calls to switch to competing services such as Mycelium.
As of noon Central European Time, the site is still down with no clear estimate for a return to normal services. If the issue is not resolved soon, the outage will shortly enter its second day.
For updates, see the exchange’s twitter feed.
Server down image via Shutterstock
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