(FinancialPress) — Coincheck — a crypto exchange that operates in Asia and labels itself as the sector leader in the region — has come under government investigation after falling victim to a hacker heist. The black hats allegedly stope $530 million from its arcs.
The exchange has committed itself to reimbursing the 260,000 affected investors – but hasn‘t specified when and how it will get the cash needed for it.
The event was revealed over the weekend. It stands to become the biggest cryptocurrency heist in history, taking the top spot from Mt Gox‘s 2014 own theft — which left a $400 million hole in its pockets.
Coincheck representatives revealed the theft was in the form of NEM – a less-well-known digital coin.
While the company promised to use its own resources to reimburse $426 billion to the affected clients, that‘s still 20% less than the revealed value of the virtual currency that was stolen.
Coincheck released a blog statement, saying that the hack “has caused immense distress to our customers, other exchanges, and people throughout the cryptocurrency industry.”
“We would like to offer our deepest and humblest apologies to all of those involved,” the exchange said. It has currently suspended trading in all virtual currencies apart from bitcoin.
Meanwhile, the value of NEM dropped a drastic 20% after the news broke – but recovered shortly after.
Coincheck did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the matter.
A spokesman for the Japanese gov‘t said that Coincheck will be supervised by financial authorities in the process of improvings its business practices as a followup to the hack.
This is only the latest in a wave of hacker attacks directed at digital currency exchanges. The black hat cybercriminals are taking advantage of a young and unregulated business space that handles large sums of investor‘s money.
“Large scale hacks are among the biggest risks faced today by the global crypto community,” said Henri Arslanian, a financial technology expert at consulting firm PwC in Hong Kong.