In the first week of June 2018, several cryptocurrency news outlets came to publish a report on crypto exchange thefts in 2018 that was originally released by Reuters in cooperation with U.S.-based cybersecurity company CipherTrace.
READ: “Cryptocurrency exchange theft surges in first half of 2018: report” https://reut.rs/2KLI3ow
The report compares the first half of 2018 vs the whole of 2017 in terms of thefts from digital currency exchanges.
The figures do look impressive: In 2018, the total of $761 MM was so far stolen from crypto trading platforms which is already three times the amount of the total crypto exchange thefts in 2017. Last year, those amounted to “only” $266 MM through the whole year.
However, the year 2017 was particularly poor on cryptocurrency exchange hacks. The blockchain space had its big exchange heist in August 2016 with the Bitfinex hack where $72 MM of user funds was lost to be eventually repaid via redemption tokens. Shortly before that, in June 2016 there was the DAO hack where a vulnerability in the code resulted in loss of $50 MM of invested funds.
The DAO was meant to be a paradigm shift in how we see companies and shareholding and while the hack was a setback for this, it meant a paradigm shift in what hackers came to focus on: The year 2017 saw a rise in smart contract and wallet breaches.
In 2018 and onwards, the developent in non-custodial exchanges is set to diminish the importance of institutional hacks somewhat. However, the weak point is now once again the user - there are already incidents such as the rogue Hola Chrome extenstion logging users’ activity in MyEtherWallet.
Data is beautiful
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