# Paxful Unfreezes 88% of Frozen Accounts: Self Custody for Bitcoin Investors
Paxful, a peer-to-peer Bitcoin (BTC) trading platform, recently halted its operations due to “the departure of important personnel” and “challenges in regulation for the sector.” A legal case filed by a co-founder of the exchange is said to have “chased away the entire senior-level team.” However, Paxful CEO Ray Youssef has announced that 88% of all previously frozen accounts now have access to their respective funds.
## 88% of Accounts Can Now Withdraw Their BTC
On April 16, Youssef shared this good news on Twitter. However, he also mentioned that $4.4 million in funds will remain frozen. These funds are in the hands of US regulators, and Youssef is unable to do anything about it. The funds that are still frozen represent 3% of total customer deposits.
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## The Advice for Self-Custody
In his Twitter thread, Youssef also advises his more than fifty thousand followers to take control of their BTC through self-custody. “Avoid American companies and always go for self-custody,” he emphasized.
With self-custody, investors manage the private keys that grant access to their bitcoins. This means that investors have complete control and do not have to rely on a third party to store their bitcoins on their behalf. When an investor chooses to keep their BTC or other crypto on a cryptocurrency exchange, for example, the exchange holds the private keys and is therefore the owner of the digital assets in theory.
Over the past year, with the collapse of companies like Celsius, Voyager, and FTX, we have seen the disastrous consequences that relying on such centralized custody can bring upon crypto investors.
## Taking Responsibility for Your Crypto Assets
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Investors who take personal responsibility for their crypto assets and move away from centralized custody providers by choosing self-custody, are far better positioned to protect their crypto holdings. Self-custody is the means for investors to realize the full benefits that Bitcoin offers in terms of decentralization, immutability, and sovereignty over one’s own finances.
As Youssef put it, “Integrity goes above risk.” By taking the time to understand and implement self-custody, investors can ensure their investments remain safe and secure, and they become a part of the growing Bitcoin network that promotes financial inclusion and freedom for everyone.