Bitcoin (BTC) Nosedives Amid South Korea Exchange Heist

Daniel Fowler
June 11, 2018

The South Korean police began an investigation on Monday after Korea's seventh largest crypto exchange Coinrail lost more than 40 billion ($37 million) in altcoins in an apparent attack by hackers over the weekend. Tron, which is one of cryptocurrencies hacked this time, dropped 16.12 percent to 52 won.

Coinrail said in a statement on its website that it's reviewing its system due to hacking attempts.

Coinrail have since confirmed that they have been victim of an attack, which has seen around a 30% loss of coins traded on the exchange, this comes in at an estimated value just shy of $40 Million.

South Korea is one of the world's major cryptocurrency trading centers, and is home to one of the most heavily trafficked virtual coin exchanges, Bithumb.

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Coinrail was mostly trading ERC20 tokens, according to CoinMarketCap. In January 2018 some $500-worth of cryptocurrency was stolen as a result of a hack on Japan-based exchange Coincheck, which led to a severe drop in market prices for various digital currencies and toughening of the country's policies towards cryptocurrency exchanges.

The frozen tokens are Pundi X (NPXS), Aston (ATX) and Nper (NPER), according to the local crypto exchange. South Korea has been the third largest market for Bitcoin trading in the world after Japan and the United States and has also suffered several major exchange hacks resulting in both fear driven activity on the trading side and calls for more stringent regulation from the government.

Coinrail contends that 70% of its total coin reserves have been moved to an offline cold wallet and remain safe. The company wasn't immediately available for further comments. Another Korean cryptocurrency exchange Youbit lost bitcoins worth around 20 billion won past year to cyberthieves twice, once in April and again in December.

Korea Internet & Security Agency, now carrying out the investigation with police, said only four of the country's largest exchanges are subject to the Information Security Management System certification (ISMS) requirement.

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