While on one side there is a boom of cryptocurrency, the same way 0the industry is getting more prone to hacking and scams. The losses and scams related to crypto hacks continue to rise sharply, with nearly $1 billion stolen so far this year, new research suggests.
In the first nine months of 2018, hackers stole nearly $927 million from the cryptocurrency exchanges and other platforms, according to a recent report from blockchain security firm CipherTrace.
The document, titled “Cryptocurrency Anti-Money Laundering 2018 Q3,” indicates the losses are 3.5 times higher than the levels seen in 2017, which came to $266 million. CipherTrace estimates the total figure will reach over $1 billion by the end of 2018. And that’s not a good news.
The most notable theft of the year 2018 was the hack of Japanese exchange Coincheck, in which around $530 million-worth of cryptos stolen.
Other major crypto breaches included a number of crypto exchanges such as Italy’s BitGrail ($195 million), Japan’s Zaif (around $60 million) and South Korea’s Coinrail (over $40 million) and Bithumb (over $30 million). Other types of businesses hit included token creation platform Bancor ($23.5 million) and Geth, an ethereum client (over $20 million).
While the biggest attacks dominated the headlines, the report also cited a steadily growing number of “smaller” thefts in the range of $20 million–$60 million, totaling $166 million since the second quarter report.
The report states:
“This data indicates a pattern of smaller robberies on a regular basis and sophisticated professional cyber thieves who carry out hacks at both the exchange and platform levels by capitalizing on exposed vulnerabilities, as well as by socially engineering employees who work at these companies.”
Some other hacks such as the CoinHoarder phishing thefts, estimated at $50 million, were excluded from the report, CipherTrace said, adding that it will include them in the 2018 annual report if the figures can be confirmed. The firm also said that it is aware of an over $60 million hack, which has not been reported publicly.
CipherTrace further revealed that 97 percent of the direct bitcoin payments from criminals went to exchanges in countries with weak anti-money laundering (AML) laws, and that the exchanges have laundered a significant amount of bitcoin, totaling 380,000 BTC or $2.5 billion at current prices.
Some governments around the world have taken stricter measures to curb the thefts, the report said, while many other governments are expected to come up with tighter cryptocurrency AML regulations by the end of this year.
What are your thoughts about crypto scams and hacking? Let us know in the comments sections.
Bitcoin under $4000
Bitcoin is crashing again in crypto market along with other cryptocurrencies, as Bitcoin again dipped under $4000 mark.
2018 will be remembered as one of the worst years for crypto currencies, after spectacular boom of crypto market in 2017 in terms of adoption and increase in market cap, this year so far has proven to be the opposite of that, Crypto market cap reached the level of $800 billion at the start of 2018 and now the total worth of crypto market is $125 billion which shows more than 80% of decline in overall market cap.
Bitcoin dipped below the level of $3500 few days ago and now market is crashing one more time, shows that bottom is still not here and we are far away from bottom as of now, market dynamics are changing, shows that all the speculators in the market are taking a big hit from this bear market.
It will be interesting to see, how bitcoin will survive this crucial time period, but the biggest question is, where is the bottom? because according to many analysts in crypto market, bottom lies somewhere between $2000-$3000
India’s largest Mobile & Internet industry forms Blockchain Committee
India is promoting the blockchain ecosystem in the country and the latest move in this regard is the country’s influential internet and mobile industry association has formed a committee dedicated to the decentralized (blockchain) technology.
India’s most-read business daily the Economic Times reported, with the new blockchain committee, the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) is batting an eye on the government to widen the blockchain industry and startups. India’s most-read business daily the Economic Times report.
The focus is to use blockchain technology to facilitate job creation and reduce the unemployment rate in the country. This will give a boom to the new digital economy in the country, the report added.
The new committee within the influential non-profit will be chaired by Tina Singh, digital chief at private lending giant Mahindra Finance.
She told the publication:
“Blockchain is undeniably the technology of the future, slated to bring decentralization and trust and accountability into multiple areas of business. However, in order to be more effective and enter the mainstream, blockchain technology needs the intervention of government bodies, regulatory authorities, and corporates.”
The committee includes several includes many well-reputed executives of major corporate giants spanning tech and financial sectors such as Microsoft, Mastercard, IBM and HDFC Bank, India’s biggest private bank.
Interestingly, the committee also includes Sandeep Goenka, founder of major Indian bitcoin exchange Zebpay. The app-only exchange was among India’s earliest and largest exchanges until it closed trading services less than a month ago. However, Zebpay continues to provide a wallet service to users, the exchange said it was “unable to find a reasonable way to conduct the cryptocurrency exchange business” following the central bank’s comprehensive ban that bars banks from providing services to exchanges and the wider crypto sector.
Despite the ban and less viability on the cryptocurrency sector, which remains unregulated, the formation of the blockchain committee proves the consistent effort to integrate the groundbreaking tech into wider society.
The IAMAI Blockchain Committee will focus on creating dialogue between all stakeholders; curate and create content to aid skill development and move towards creating a participative economy with the usage of blockchain.”
BTCC Chinese Crypto firm plans to start its services in South Korea
BTCC, China’s first cryptocurrency exchange, has planned to expand its services in South Korea on October 31, 2018.
Initially known as BTC China, the cryptocurrency trading exchange was one of the largest in the world in terms of trading volume. However, owing to China’s crackdown on crypto trading and initial coin offerings (ICOs), the exchange was asked to shut down its services in the country in September last year and transferred to Hong Kong in January 2018.
According to a report, BTCC’s Korea operations will be headed by Lee Jae-beom. He said that BTCC Koplannedaned to highlight a new vision of cryptocurrencies. The exchange will first launch its beta services this month, with the official debut set for November.
Furthermore, the exchange stated that it will provide not only the trading, buying and selling services to its customers, but it also plans to create own a wallet, a mining pool, and a consumer payments service. However, there is still no information about the coins listed on an exchange. On the South Korean version of its website, the company has not yet specified which coins will be supported on the exchange.
Commenting on the launch, Lee said: “Cryptocurrency exchanges are facing a turning point due to a downturn in local exchanges while global exchanges are making a leap here. BTCC Korea will be able to present a new strategy and vision of crypto exchanges.”
The report said, BTCC also plans to expand its services and it wants to achieve this via strategic tie-ups with local and global firms. Recently, the company announced that it had joined hands with Defytime, a producer of anti-ageing products. The partnership will helpDefytime to adopt blockchain in healthcare products.
In Hong Kong, BTCC offers a range of services and products for trading to a global customer base. In particular, the exchange facilitates the trading of five cryptocurrencies against the USD – BTC, BCH, ETH, LTC, and DASH. In addition, BCH, ETH, LTC and DASH can also be traded against BTC.
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