Bitpoint has become the latest exchange hack victim, having seen $32 million worth of cryptocurrencies stolen. The Tokyo-based exchange saw 3.5 billion yen in a variety of currencies taken Thursday, including BTC, BCH, and XRP, in a move that will heighten calls for tighter regulations in Japan.
Hack Method Unknown
It is not yet known how the hackers gained access to the exchange, but some 70% of the stolen funds were user funds, with both hot and cold wallets compromised, suggesting the exchange was thoroughly compromised. Suspicions were first raised when the exchange detected errors related to the remittance of XRP funds to customers. Almost half an hour after detecting the errors Bitpoint strongly suspected a hack had taken place, and six hours later the exchange had pulled down the shutters and notified the police.
Customers to Get Refunds?
Bitpoint is owned by Remixpoint Inc., whose shares plunged 19% on the news. Bitpoint was one of the cryptocurrencies ordered to improve security controls by Japan’s Financial Services Agency following the 2018 Coincheck hack, which saw over $500 million worth of cryptocurrency stolen via a virus installed on employee computers. Bitpoint have not yet said if they will, or can, pay their customers back should the money not be recovered, although this is likely to be on the cards given that the Coincheck hack and another attack on a Japanese exchange, Zaif, in 2018, resulted in orders being given by Japanese regulators to refund customers.