Top Exchange Bithump Says Over $30 million in Cryptocurrencies Stolen
Bithumb, an exchange based in South Korea, said in a press release on its website that all customer deposits and withdrawals have been suspended while it reviews the situation.
The exchange said it will compensate all the loss from its own funds and that all customers’ assets have been “securely saved” in the company’s “cold wallet.”
[Notice for the suspension of all deposit and withdrawal service]
We checked that some of cryptocurrencies valued about $30,000,000 was stolen. Those stolen cryptocurrencies will be covered from Bithumb and all of assets are being transferring to cold wallet.
— Bithumb (@BithumbOfficial) June 20, 2018
The theft presumably occurred as the result of a hack, though the exchange has not officialy confirmed this. Given the relatively small size of the theft, it’s likely that a hacker managed to gain access to an internet-connected “hot wallet” for one of the more thinly-traded assets listed on the platform.
Bithumb said that the company will cover all losses so that users will not be affected, other than by the temporary inability to move their assets. Deposits and withdrawals were suspended as of the time of writing at 1:58 UTC.
Bithumb currently ranks as the world’s 6th-largest and South Korea’s 2nd-largest cryptocurrency exchange, with a daily trading volume of just over $330 million, according to CoinMarketCap.
The incident marked the second time a South Korean exchange had been hacked this month. Less than 2 weeks ago, little-known bourse Coinrail lost approximately $37.2 million worth of coins, including a variety of ERC-20 tokens.
The bitcoin price dropped nearly $220 in the hour following the hack, erasing much of the recovery that the markets had seen over the previous 48 hours.