Hackers Sink Bitcoin After Stealing $65 Million From Exchange

Ransomware Hackers Bitcoin

Bitcoin came crashing down after hackers stole about $65 million of the crypotocurrency. Bitcoin slumped to around 8 percent against dollar as noted at 10:17 a.m. on Wednesday in Tokyo, meaning it dropped by 13% in two days as it also sank 6.2 percent on Monday which may or may not be because of the hack.

Bitfinex, the Hong-Kong based exchange said on Tuesday that it halted the trading along with all the withdrawals and deposits. The exchange stated they it was still investigating the details with the law enforcement. They also acknowledged that bitcoins were stolen from the accounts of its users.

Fred Ehrsam, the co-founder of Coinbase, another cryptocurrency wallet and exchange platform wrote in an e-mail that “Yes, it is a large breach but Bitfinex is a large exchange, so it is a significant short term event. Even in the past Bitcoin has always shown its resiliency when it comes to such events.”

On Wednesday, Bitfinex confirmed that hackers took 119,756 Bitcoins or approximately $65 million at current prices. On their blog, Bitfined wrote that they will now look at various options to address customer losses later in the investigation and they only ask for the community’s patience as they unravel the causes and consequences of this breach.

The Hong Kong exchange had been dominating the charts for having the largest number of U.S. dollar-denominated transactions for quite some time. Chinese exchange OKCoin has the most overall trading in the digital currency with over 90% in the Chinese Yuan.

The recent price drop is similar to the last incident of similar proportions involving a huge Bitcoin exchange platform. In February 2014, Tokyo-based Mt. Gox disclosed that it was hacked and few weeks later Mt. Gox filed for bankruptcy. The Bitcoin prices plunged 30% that month.

After the incident, Bitfinex halted the trading in all digital currencies including Ethereum, however they stated that the losses were limited to Bitcoin only.

Peter Todd wrote an email confirming that Bitfinex will be in lockdown/investigation mode and they are not going to know anything for sure for a few days.

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