The transfer is successful, but where is the money?
We all experienced that moment of nervousness when we do a crypto transaction. That feeling soon turns to excitement when the crypto arrives at the designated destination. However, for the unfortunate few, that feeling of excitement never came.
As crypto is decentralized, any mistake you make can mean money lost forever. We will go through a few reasons why these mistakes happen and how you can prevent them.
First, let's understand the transfer process, using Bitcoin as an example, the transfer process is as follows:
- User creates a transaction.
- The node receives the transaction and broadcasts it.
- The transaction is verified.
- Every node competes for bookkeeping rights, aka. mining.
- The result of the calculation is made public to the whole network, and other nodes verify the result of the calculation.
- Every node in the network synchronizes the latest data.
As you can see from the steps above, a delay in any of these steps will result in a successful but delayed transaction. After waiting for a while, your transaction will arrive at the destination.
There are also some reasons why your transaction may result in a loss of assets. Some can be rescued back, while some can't. Users must also take utmost care when transferring to an exchange.
- Wrong transfer address: Exchange assigns separate addresses to each currency, so if you do not transfer to the address given by the exchange, the assets may be lost. For example, if you transfer BTC to a BSV address by mistake, you will lose that BTC. Another situation is that some transfers require memos, such as XLM and EOS. Exchange distinguishes them by requiring you to fill in the memo, if you don't fill in the memo or fill it in incorrectly, the transfer coins will be lost.
- When the exchange is being upgraded or maintained, there will be a certain delay in processing transactions, in this case, the exchange will usually send a maintenance notice, and users must wait patiently.
- The amount of coins sent to the exchange is less than the minimum requirement of the exchange.
- The exchange may have stopped supporting the coins you just transferred.
Since blockchain transfers are irreversible and there are no traditional operations such as withdrawing or canceling transactions, the general solution is to:
- Confirm the problem, if the delay is caused by network blockage. If yes, just be patient and wait until the network is back to normal. You may also take note:
c. For Ethereum-related coins, more than 30 confirmations are required (https://etherscan.io).
- Send the transaction number to the exchange's customer service, communicate with them patiently, and ask them for suitable help.
- The number of confirmation has not reached the target required. This situation usually exists when sending to exchanges. When the transaction is uploaded, the number of confirmation starts at 1. Different exchanges have different requirements for number of confirmation required, for example, most Bitcoin transaction requires 6 confirmations while ETH requires 12. We can check the number of confirmation by using (http://tokenview.com). You will need to wait until the number of confirmation to reach the required number.
- The transaction is returned due to insufficient fees. In this case, the transaction has ran out of gas and has failed. For example, an ETH transaction requires gas fee to complete the transaction. If the gas has ran out before the transaction is complete, the transaction will be returned.