On ShapeShift’s original interface, users would automatically receive unique single-use deposit addresses. Cryptocurrency sent to that unique address would be automatically converted to another chosen coin and sent to an address specified by the user.
The anonymous and nearly instantaneous nature of ShapeShift (crypto “shape shifter”) made it one of the most popular cryptocurrency sites on the WWW.
Users were marveled at the fact they could send one cryptocurrency and receive another almost instantly, with no identity verification or even signup requirement.
Despite ShapeShift’s enormous initial success, since September 2018 regulators forced the exchange to begin performing KYC and AML checks on all customers.
Authorities feared that cryptocurrency obtained via illegal activities could have been “shape-shifted” to different blockchains, making the funds hard to trace.
There was uproar
ShapeShift lost thousands of customers because of the new mandatory KYC identification policy.
Voorhees was one of BitInstant’s first collaborators back in 2011.
Two former BitInstant operatives have been sentenced to jail, although Voorhees is in no way related to their sentences (see Forbes article under references).
It is estimated that Erik Voorhees is worth U$ 11 million at the time of this writing (not counting inheritance since the senior Voorhees family is worth several million U$).