Cryptocurrency markets are juicy targets for hackers: Timeline

Virginia Carson
June 22, 2018

Bithumb has assured its users that they will receive compensation, announcing that "all deposit and withdrawal services" will be halted and requesting customers not to deposit funds into Bithumb wallet addresses. "However, this loss will be compensated by Bithumb's own reservoir, and all assets of our customers are securely saved in Bithumb's cold wallet, hence all asset is completely safe and secured".

"Since coins in the cold wallets are not at all wired to the internet, it would have been impossible for hackers to steal those in cold wallets unless they physically broke in", said In, a blockchain expert at the research center. However, we will make every effort to reopen the service as soon as possible, with the ultimate goal of protecting your assets. The company didn't provide details of the attack, but it did say that the loss will be covered by the platform.

It's the latest in a series of thefts reported by cryptocurrency exchanges in recent months.

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Bithumb, which trades more than 37 different virtual currencies on its platform, has a 24-hour trading volume of almost $400 million, according to statistics obtained from CoinMarketCap, which makes it the sixth largest virtual currency exchange in the world.

The hackers took on Bithumb just nine days after a major attack on Coinrail, then the seventh-largest cryptocurrency exchange in the country.

The price of Bitcoin had a sharp fall from $6,761 to $6,611 immediately after the announcement and Ethereum fell from $537 to $521 at the same time.

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Last week the company carried out a security upgrade to its database and transferred some of its cryptocurrency assets to storage systems which are not connected to the internet.

Once back in time, it was the world's biggest crypto exchange platform which has now been temporarily shut as the thieves just got away with $30 million worth of unrevealed cryptocurrencies from the exchange, leaving no clue behind.

Although a change in the wallet system may be a security improvement for some exchanges, it ended up backfiring, resulting in an unexpected cryptocurrency hack.

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At the time of writing, one bitcoin was trading at $6,626.19 (£5,035) - representing a 1.4% drop from its level before news of the heist spread. A single Bitcoin is now valued at roughly $6,700, having rebounded slightly since the Coinrail Bitcoin heist lows.

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