One of the Largest Bitcoin Exchanges in the World Hacked

Media Division | July 5, 2017

The rate at which we continue to improve and expand our technology has been impressive. We now have computers that can perform amazing tasks, AI on the market with Amazon Echo and Google Home, and a multitude of everyday devices connected to the internet. Years ago, the expansion even prompted the creation of a digital currency called Bitcoin. Bitcoin has grown greatly over time, both in use and value. When it first entered the scene, a single Bitcoin was virtually worthless, but now one Bitcoin is valued at around $2600. With this cryptocurrency being worth so much, many cyber attackers want to get their hands on as much of it as possible. In fact, basically, all ransomware attacks demand payment in the form of Bitcoin, though this is also likely due to it being untraceable. This desire for Bitcoin has now led cyber attackers to even target one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world.

The Effects of the Hack

The victim of the attack was an exchange called Bithumb, which is based in South Korea. In regard to the volume of all cryptocurrencies exchanged, the organization ranks as the fourth largest globally. The initial breach is believed to have been in February, though it was not discovered until June, at which point they had notified the authorities. According to reports, the hack led to around 30,000 customer’s information being compromised. The incident is being investigated by the South Korean Internet and Security Agency as a result of some customers saying that they had lost money from the attack. Bithumb had said in a statement, “The employee PC, not the head office server, was hacked. Personal information such as mobile phone and email address of some users were leaked. However, some customers were found to have been stolen from because of the disposable password used in electronic financial transactions.” The exchange had initially said that they would cover losses up to 100,000 Won, which is about $87. But, there are some who may have lost much more than this, as with one user who claims that they lost $1.2 billion Won.

Bitcoin is not the only form of cryptocurrency out there, but it is the most prominent. Another type that Bithumb deals in is called Ethereum, which valued at around $260. Cryptocurrencies have been increasing in value quite rapidly, making it quite plain to see why hackers are beginning to target these large exchanges.

The Necessity of Comprehensive Security to Prevent Cyber Attacks

As hackers continue to become more bold and clever, and further organizations are targeted, it is important that organizations take a very meticulous look at their cyber security. Even the smallest hole or vulnerability can easily lead to a massive breach or theft, which in some cases could cause an organization to fail. For organizations to truly prevent cyber attacks, they need to ensure that they have comprehensive security tools and implements in place. They need to have a constant awareness of their networks and systems by using monitoring, defend proactively with intelligence, have lines of defense with antivirus and firewalls, etc. Skimping on cyber security because of a lack of financial resources or manpower, or any other reason is quite dangerous. Cyber security is an investment to an organization, which is why many need to stop viewing it only as a burden to resources. Massive Alliance offers all of the above tools and services, as well as much more to help organizations prevent cyber attacks.

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