We understand that time is critically important when it comes to newly deposited funds being available for trading. In an effort to speed this up, Bitfinex offers an expedited deposit process with reduced confirmation requirements depending on your account type. See below for confirmations required per account type.
Confirmations are the number of times the cryptocurrency in question must be confirmed by its network prior to being considered valid. The duration a confirmation takes can vary beyond Bitfinex’s control due to the design nature of cryptocurrencies and mining.
Example: Bitcoin blocks take, on average, 10 minutes to confirm by the Bitcoin mining network. Provided the Bitcoin network is not under heavy load and the network fee allows the deposit to be included in the next mined block, a BTC deposit would take 30+ minutes (3 confirmations x 10 minutes) to be considered valid and displayed in your wallet balance. Of course, the deposit could be considered valid more quickly for Verified (~20 minutes) and Investor/Shareholder (~10 minutes) account types, as the number of confirmations necessary for transactions is reduced.
The vast majority of delays in cryptocurrency deposits are due to inappropriately assessed transaction fees by the depositor. There could also be mining network conditions beyond Bitfinex’s control which create delays.
Always review the confirmation requirements of those in control of receiving addresses. To averse risk, withdrawals to addresses outside of Bitfinex often set their own confirmation threshold.