Funds stolen from the Upbit Hack in November 2019 were reportedly moved to unknown wallets.
A large scale transfer of 2,000 ETH, valued at US $ 406,469 [AU$621,987], was recently reported by live crypto transaction tracker Whale Alert.
According to Whale Alert, the funds have been transferred from the wallet used to store the stolen funds from the 2019 Upbit Hack to unknown wallets.
⚠️ 2000 #ETH ($ 406,469) of stolen funds transferred from Upbit Hack Nov 2019 to an unknown wallet
– Whale alert (@whale_alert) May 5, 2020
The Upbit Hack of 2019
Upbit, a crypto exchange platform based in South Korea, suffered from a hack that resulted in the loss of cryptocurrencies stored in its hot wallet in 2019.
A total of 342,000 ETH, valued at almost $ 50 million at the time, were transferred to various unknown wallet addresses.
Sok-Wu Lee, CEO of Upbit, apologized for the situation and temporarily closed the trade to reduce the damage. Upbit also covered the losses. The statement reads as follows:
“Around 1:06 p.m. on November 27, 342,000 ethereum were sent from Upbit’s hot Etherbit wallet to an anonymous wallet address – 0xa09871AEadF4994Ca12f5c0b6056BBd1d343c029 […] We have taken immediate steps to protect your assets and no investor assets have been lost. “
What followed later was a sale of cryptocurrency assets due to the fear that other hot wallets would be the victims of the same attack. The capitalization of all digital assets then fell to $ 191 billion.
This is not the first attempt to escape with the funds
However, the transfer attempts reported by Whale Alert today were not the first.
Several attempts have been made before when hackers tried to transfer them to exchanges like Binance and Huobi.
This prompted Binance to cooperate to ensure that these funds did not reach the exchange. According to Binance, once they find that some of these funds are transferred to the stock market, they will be “immediately frozen”.
We will work with Upbit and other industry players to ensure that any hacked funds that may go to Binance are immediately frozen.
– CZ Binance 🔶🔶🔶 (@cz_binance) November 27, 2019
Upbit has worked on improving its security since then
Recent reports this year have revealed efforts by Upbit to ensure that they can provide a safer and more secure trading platform.
To this end, they have extended their partnership with Chainalysis, a blockchain monitoring platform. They will continue to use Chainalysis’s Know-Your-Transaction (KYT) product to monitor transactions in real time and report suspicious cryptographic activity as it occurs.
According to Alex Kim, managing director of the Upbit Asia-Pacific region (APAC), their partnership with Chainalysis will help them comply with future regulations from the authorities.
In a statement, Kim said:
“As more and more markets around the world are adopting new regulations, it was essential for us to find a compliance partner who could work with us as we expand our digital asset business to new markets.”
The takeaway from the Upbit hack
Much has been learned from cases where centralized exchanges have been victims of hacking. And just in time for BTC to halve, it could be more important than ever to keep trade secure.
If BTC prices go up and network security loses the necessary adjustments before and during the half, this may not promise good news for crypto investors.
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