Tether and Bitfinex Drop Opposition to FOIL Request

Julia Smith
Last updated: | 2 min read

Stablecoin issuer, Tether, and cryptocurrency exchange, Bitfinex, have decided to drop their opposition to a Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) request made earlier this year by various news outlets.

“We have nothing to hide”

“Our decision is rooted in our unwavering commitment to transparency and the belief that we have nothing to hide,” the companies said in a joint statement released on Friday, November 24th.

If granted, a FOIL request would provide access to specific records belonging to the cryptocurrency exchange and stablecoin issuer. Cryptonews.com has reached out to both Tether and Bitfinex for additional information pertaining to the details of the request.

“However, it’s essential to clarify that transparency does not mean a wholesale release of all our documents,” their statement continued. “This approach is not in line with standard business practices.”

Tether and Bitfinex call out journalists

The companies then called out a number of journalists, including Zeke Faux, Ada Hui, and Shane Shifflet, who lodged the FOIL request for “certain behaviors” and highlighted their “concerns.” In particular, the statement alleges that Faux’s work “has sometimes extended beyond the boundaries of professional journalism.” However, the companies provided no explicit examples to support this claim.

Additionally, the statement takes aim at both the Wall Street Journal and Bloomberg, calling the news organizations’ reporting “one-sided and inaccurate.”

“Our goal is to set a higher moral standard and lead by example,” continued the statement.

However, the statement continues that both companies are open to working with journalists they deem “adhere to ethical reporting standards and respect data privacy boundaries.”

“We also believe that responsible document review and handling is essential before any public release, and we stress that transparency does not equate to unrestricted public disclosure of all documents,” the statement claims.

History repeats itself

News of Tether and Bitfinex’s decision to not oppose the FOIL request is not the first time this year a similar decision was made.

In June, Tether dropped opposition to a FOIL request made by media company Coindesk regarding the terms of a 2021 settlement with the New York Attorney General’s Office.

After the state alleged the company moved around hundreds of millions of dollars in an attempt to hide nearly $850 million worth of commingled funds, Tether had to pay a $18.5 million fine as part of the settlement,

Tether has nothing to hide and we hold utmost confidence in the accuracy of our financial figures,” the company said in a statement at the time.

Both Tether and Bitfinex are owned by Ifinex Inc.