The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has reportedly launched an investigation into Seattle-based cryptocurrency exchange Bittrex over potential regulatory violations.

The news comes as Bittrex prepares to shut down its US operations on April 30. Although Bittrex claims to be cooperating with regulators, it has not yet received any formal communication from the SEC regarding the investigation.

According to a report by The Wall Street Journal, the SEC alleges that Bittrex violated laws as an exchange, broker-dealer, and clearinghouse without first registering with the regulator. The SEC has been stepping up its scrutiny of the crypto industry in recent years and has taken enforcement action against a number of companies for violating securities laws.

Bittrex has previously faced criticism over its compliance measures, including the delisting of certain tokens due to concerns over their legality. If found guilty of violating securities laws, Bittrex could face significant penalties, including fines and potentially even having its operations suspended.

The news of the SEC investigation has caused concern among Bittrex users and the wider crypto community, with some worrying about the potential impact on the industry as a whole.

This latest development is a reminder of the importance of regulatory compliance in the crypto space and highlights the ongoing need for exchanges to ensure they are operating within the bounds of the law.

As the crypto industry continues to evolve, regulatory bodies are becoming increasingly vigilant in their efforts to protect investors and prevent fraudulent activities.

While the investigation into Bittrex is ongoing, it serves as a warning to other exchanges that they must take regulatory compliance seriously or risk facing serious consequences.