Tokyo crypto exchange platform Bitpoint Japan lost around $32 million (¥3.5 billion) after an alleged hack, the Guardian reports. This comes in light of a series of cyberattacks on virtual currencies. Bitpoint is managed by Remixpoint, which handles different cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple, Litecoin and bitcoin cash.
The attack was detected after Remixpoint encountered an error when trying to transfer funds. Its outgoing transfers went haywire on Thursday, leading to the loss of various digital currencies amounting to millions. However, the firm clarified that the funds lost were those in online wallets, while those in offline wallets remain intact.
Japan Today says that this is the second attack on the firm. It suffered from a first breach, losing the first $28 million (¥3.02 billion). The most recent one cost around $2.3 million (¥250 million)
Around $2.3 million (¥2.5 billion) of the money lost comes from customer funds. Remixpoint owns the remaining amount. With millions in losses, Remixpoint promised to compensate its clients. Meanwhile, the firm suffered from a 20% drop in shares.
One of many
According to The Guardian, the attack on Remixpoint and Bitpoint Japan is part of several cyber assaults on cryptocurrencies. Reports say that the hackers are exploiting the volatile nature of these types of currencies.
Some of the past attacks involve Coincheck, a Japan-based exchange service, which lost $500 million in digital monies last year. South Korea’s Youbit also suffered from similar attacks twice in 2017, leading to its bankruptcy. Another exchange platform MtGox also experienced cyber assaults, which led to it losing around 850,000 bitcoins in 2014.
FCA: ban crypto-linked financial instruments
In light of the mounting amount of money stolen, the United Kingdom’s Financial Conduct Authority says suggested banning such instruments. According to the FCA, assets linked to digital currencies cause significant damages to consumers. Moreover, it remarked that these clients are “unlikely to understand [the] risks or value” of crypto-based assets.
This proposed ban includes derivatives and exchange-traded notes (ETNs) linked to crypto-based assets. The FCA believes that these types of investments are “ill-suited to small investors,” due to its “extreme volatility.” FCA also expressed concerns that these investors may suffer losses as they may fail to grasp the nature of cryptocurrencies.
Japan implements the use of cryptocurrencies, making it a legal payment method in April 2017. The country has been implementing a licensing system to supervise cryptocurrency usage.