Bitcoin plunges after cryptocurrency exchange hacked

12 June, 2018, 11:12 | Author: Eric Barnett
  • Conrail Hack Breaks the Melts Down Fragile Crypto Markets

Although the exact amount of damage caused by the theft is yet to be confirmed, South Korean news outlet Yonhap News has estimated it to be around 40 billion won ($37.2 million).

Coinciding with the announcement, the price of bitcoin (which was already seeing sluggish performance) saw a 7 percent dip, and much of the crypto market followed suit.

South Korea is one of the biggest markets for trading in digital currencies but the boom in their popularity has forced the government to tighten regulations, following similar moves in other countries. Another Korean cryptocurrency exchange Youbit lost bitcoins worth around 20 billion won previous year to cyberthieves twice, once in April and again in December.

When the bitcoin price fell more than $1,000 and the cryptocurrency market cap shed more than $40 billion on "Bloody Sunday", many media commentators attributed the decline to a security breach at a small cryptocurrency exchange in South Korea. The exchange says it has managed to freeze all exposed NPXS, NPER and ATX coins, and that other cryptocurrencies are now being kept in a cold wallet.

Bitcoin was trading at around $6,750 in early afternoon trading in Asia.


It's not uncommon for cryptocurrency exchanges to get hacked and the losses often run into tens of millions of dollars.

In South Korea, 14 major local cryptocurrency exchanges adopted measures aimed at better protecting users in January this year, including restrictions on creating more than one account.

Asia-based crypto commentator Martin Young, writing on news site newsbtc, argued that the Coinrail hack was not hugely significant globally, as the exchange is now ranked only 90th by volume.

The hack resulted in Coinrail losing around 30 per cent of the coins traded on the exchange and trading has now been suspended as the website is temporarily unavailable. "The company wasn't immediately available for further comments".

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