January 17, 2019. Cryptopia, a popular cryptocurrency exchange from New Zealand has suffered a major hacking incident that forced the platform to go offline.
On January 14, 2019, Cryptopia suffered a security breach which resulted in significant losses for the company. Once the hacking was identified, Cryptopia put itself into maintenance mode while assessing the number of damages.
Cryptopia Exchange has remained in maintenance mode as it works with New Zealand authorities to investigate the crime.
Whale Alert, a Twitter account that tracks large cryptocurrency transactions to and from exchanges, shared on social media that around $2.44 million worth of ETH and $1.18 million worth of CENNZ tokens have moved from Cryptopia to unknown wallets.
In an update, it was reported that some of the stolen funds were sent to Binance, a major crypto exchange. Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao said via Twitter that the move by the criminals to transfer the funds to Binance is a “very high-risk maneuver for them”. Mr. Zhao also confirmed that they already freeze the stolen funds.
Meanwhile, the New Zealand authorities admitted they are dealing with a complex situation, stating that their focus includes commencing a forensic digital investigation of the company and physical examination of Cryptopia’s workplace. The police’s priority is to identify, and if possible, recover the missing funds to Cryptopia customers.
The Cryptopia hack is the first major hacking news of a cryptocurrency exchange this 2019. Last year, Japanese exchange Coincheck was hacked and millions worth of NEM coins (XEM) were stolen. The issue stemmed from the exchange not using multisig wallets to store XEMs, with Coincheck further admitting in a press conference that all coins that are not bitcoin are only stored on hot wallets. Since then, Coincheck has refunded customers of their stolen funds, had undergone some organizational changes, and has now received a license from Japan’s Finance Service Agency, something they did not have at the time of the hacking.
This article originally appeared at BitPinas on January 17, 2019: Cryptocurrency Exchange Cryptopia Hacked