$400 Million Missing In Hack Of Japanese Digital Currency Exchange

Alicia Cross
January 28, 2018

At the time that the theft was detected, the 58 billion yen worth of funds reportedly taken were worth a little over $500 million, and would have represented around five or six percent of the almost 9 billion NEM tokens in existence.

The cryptocurrency exchange also reportedly said that it used various types of wallets to store different cryptocurrencies.

The exchange is scheduled to report its security situation to the FSA as early as Sunday, along with details of the ongoing investigation.

In its heyday, Mt. Gox was just about the only game in town for bitcoin traders and altcoins were still something of a novelty. All withdrawals have been halted.

Coincheck issued a series of tweets before the press conference, saying: "We have suspended the deposit, withdrawal, buying and selling of NEM".

As news spread of Coincheck's suspension, the price of bitcoin fell by 6.41 percent at the time of publishing, according to CoinMarketCap.

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So far, there hasn't been any speculation over who might have been behind the attack, but North Korea is known to have taken a strong interest in hacking cryptocurrencies as a means of raising foreign exchange. It operates exchanges between bitcoin/ethereum and fiat currencies in Japan.

It seems the exchange was hacked after all.

Like bitcoin, NEM is a cryptocurrency built on top of blockchain, but it uses a more environmentally-friendly method to confirm transactions.

TechCrunch describes the currency as a "distributed ledger platform primarily aimed at enabling payments and other financial services".

This morning's intraday low $10,891.02 came at the start of the day and, while Bitcoin is making a bearish move at the time of writing, we will expect plenty of support at $11,000, though we have seen Bitcoin's ranges on the decline of late, with $10,000 levels hit with greater frequency. "We are tracing them and if we're able to continue tracking, it may be possible to recover them". Coincheck had however not obtained this license and was not under the regulating authority. Lax security is a pressing concern for industry participants as digital currencies seek to become more legitimized as digital assets become an accepted investment.

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