The Bitcoin exchange KuCoin has become the victim of a hacker attack. It is estimated that 150 to 200 million US dollars disappeared. Most of the money is said to have already been recovered.
The Bitcoin exchange KuCoin has announced that it was the victim of a hack attack on September 26. Mainly Bitcoin (BTC), Ether (ETH) and ERC 20 tokens were acquired by the attackers on their raid. The exchange did not explicitly comment on the amount of damage and reassured that it was a small part of the exchanges total capital. According to external estimates, however, crypto-values of 150 to 200 million US dollars (USD) were apparently lost in the process.
In the first tweets KuCoin stated that no investor had to fear for his money. All funds were covered 100 percent by insurance. Since 2018, i.e. one year after the founding of the Exchange, a fund had been set up to protect itself against this type of attack. The Exchange came under criticism at the beginning of 2019, when it had encouraged wash trading.
In the meantime, the financial services provider is working with other Bitcoin exchanges such as Binance, Huobi and OKEx to recover the funds. The exchange also cooperates with security companies, law enforcement agencies and other block chain projects. Within one week KuCoin wants to be able to offer all services again.
KuCoin: Only Hot Wallets were affected
On the night of 26 September, the security department of KuCoin had noticed irregularities in the trade. Unusually large sums of money disappeared from the stock exchange, whereupon it informed investors on Twitter. CEO Johnny Lyu spoke about the incident in a livestream during the day. First he gave a short overview of the situation. Then he described that cold wallets (i.e. wallets that are not connected to the Internet) were not affected. Only amounts in hot wallets could be stolen by the hackers. In addition: There are rewards of up to 100,000 US dollars (USD) for helpful hints.
Meanwhile, not much is known about the hacker or hackers of KuCoin. Apparently, an attempt was made to cash in on the booty via the Bitcoin exchange Uniswap. However, transactions via the decentralised application (dApp) based on the Ethereum block chain are inherently traceable. This means that even an exchange of coins for ether will not affect traceability. Stock exchanges that link addresses to the hacker attack will therefore refuse transactions they have commissioned.
KuCoin has since declared that it has already been able to secure crypto assets worth 134 million US dollars. Thanks to the traceability of the transactions, no price collapse of ether is therefore expected.
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