Bitcoin price plunges after cryptocurrency exchange is hacked

Bitcoin price plunges after cryptocurrency exchange is hacked

Bitcoin price plunges after cryptocurrency exchange is hacked

Representations of the Ripple, Bitcoin, Etherum and Litecoin virtual currencies are seen on a PC motherboard in this illustration picture, Feb 13, 2018.

Bitcoin has dropped 11% since 5pm NY time on Friday and was trading at $6,784.04 as of 10.21am in Hong Kong on Monday, bringing its year-to-date loss to 53%.

Although Coinrail didn't specify the value of the heist, a wallet address that has been linked to the alleged attacker appeared to have stolen more than $40 million worth of cryptocurrency, TechCrunch noted.

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A cryptocurrency exchange hack in South Korea jolted holders of digital assets, fueling a $46 billion selloff and extending this year's Bitcoin slump to more than 50 percent. While the latest hacking target - a South Korean venue called Coinrail - is much smaller, the news triggered knee-jerk selling by investors, according to Stephen Innes, head of Asia Pacific trading at Oanda Corp in Singapore.

In 2014, Tokyo-based Mt. Gox, which once handled 80 percent of the world's bitcoin trades, filed for bankruptcy after losing bitcoins worth around half a billion dollars. First and foremost is the news that another South Korean exchange has been hacked.

South Korea is one of the biggest markets for trading in digital currencies but the boom in their popularity has forced the government to tighten regulations, following similar moves in other countries.

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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. The venue added that 70 percent of the cryptocurrencies it holds are being kept safely in a cold wallet, which isn't connected to the Internet and is less vulnerable to theft.

"Coinrail, as of June this year, hasn't been certified with the ISMS, as it isn't mandatory (for the organization to do so)", the local regulator said in a statement.

Coinrail last traded over $2.48 million in 24 hours before the hack; making it one of the top 100 cryptocurrency exchanges in the world as per CoinMarketCap data.

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"We began the investigation immediately after receiving reports from the company".

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