In what came as a shock to the global cryptocurrency community, South Korea-based exchange Bithumb reported that its security protocol had been breached on Friday.
The exchange said that on Friday, at around 10:15 pm, it noticed some abnormal withdrawal which turned out to be siphoning of funds. Around $19 million was siphoned off that night. Interestingly, however, the exchange said that none of the users’ wallets were affected and all the funds that were stolen belonged to the exchange.
It said, “All the spilled cryptocurrency is owned by company, and all the member’s asset is under the protection of cold wallet.” Bithumb said that the hack took place, due to passwords being stolen. It added that currently it is working with the Foundation to recover the lost password.
While Bithumb has not officially revealed the total sum missing from their coffers, news portal Finance Magnates said according to multiple blockchain analysis, more than 3 million EOS tokens worth around $12.7 million had been transferred from a hot wallet. Apart from that, another news outlet, claimed that another 20 million XRP tokens valued around $6.2 million were also compromised from the exchange.
The exchange acknowledged its fault stating that while they focused primarily against external attacks, they were not fully prepared for internal invasions.
Ironically, earlier this year, few exchanges including Bithumb had set up a hotline where users can share information on a real time basis on any unusual activity or trading on any exchange, pyramid schemes or voice phishing. At the time, an unnamed source from one of these exchanges had said, “They are now able to instantly check any wrongful transactions made at other exchanges and take necessary measures, such as blocking their own related accounts, “The cooperative step against money laundering via cryptocurrencies is expected to boost the soundness of the industry and to better protect consumers.”
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