On September 8, 2020, a small crypto exchange based in Slovakia announced that it had lost funds to hackers. According to a tweet from the Eterbase crypto exchange, the hackers walked away with nearly $2 million worth of funds.
Details of the Attack
The hackers gained access to the exchange’s hot wallets and stole Bitcoin, XRP, Ethereum, Algorand, TRON, and Tezos tokens. In total, the attackers walked away with crypto worth around $1.8 million at current market prices.
The Eterbase exchange is relatively small and it experiences daily trading volumes of around $3 million. Hackers managed to steal the funds by accessing the exchange’s hot wallets, which are wallets connected to the internet. However, the exchange clarified that none of the users’ personal information had been stolen.
The Dispersion of the Funds
When they tried to track down the funds, they found that they had gone to various places. For instance, the hackers sent the stole ETH to the Tether stablecoin. Others went into the Uniswap exchange, while others went to the Binance exchange.
On its Telegram Channel, Eterbase said that it had reported the issues to the authorities and they were working together with them. The announcement added that they were taking measures to ensure that no more funds held at the exchange by traders would be stolen.
The statement added that they would not reveal any more details since the investigation was ongoing. They ended the statement by requesting for patience as they resolved the issue. All withdrawals from the exchange have been suspended until Thursday, September 10, 2020.
Hacking of Crypto Exchanges
The hacking of crypto exchanges is a persistent problem in the crypto world. Mt Gox was one of the first major crypto exchanges to be hacked in 2014. Hackers stole Bitcoin worth around $450 million at the time from Mt Gox. To provide perspective on the enormity of the hacker, the stolen Bitcoin would be worth around $8.5 billion at today’s prices.
For those who often use crypto exchanges to trade, it is advisable not to leave all the funds at the exchange. As various incidents over the years have demonstrated, storing funds at an online crypto exchange is not safe it is advisable to acquire a hardware wallet to store huge sums of crypto.