There has been a marked increase in cyber-crime over the past few years and there is a strong correlation between the rise of cryptocurrencies and the rise of cybercrime. Over the past few months there has been a particular type of cyber-crime - the theft of cryptocurrencies. This has particularly been on the rise over the past few months. The latest victim of such an attack is BitGrail, where 17 Million Nano cryptocurrency tokens were stolen.
17,000,000 Nano tokens, which were, at the time of the hack, priced in close to $12 were stolen from the exchange via means of ‘unauthorized transactions’. This is a second such attack which has taken place in the last 2 weeks. Late in January, Japan’s CoinCheck was hacked where $530 Million worth of cryptocurrencies were stolen. Such incidents are rising in number of late and BitGrail has become the latest exchange to fall to these attacks.
BitGrail declared insolvency after the attack. This comes as no surprise as most cryptocurrency exchanges do this after a hack. Following this announcement, the Nano prices have begun to fall and reached $9.2 in a few hours.
Following this attack on the exchange, BitGrail has formally filed a police complaint. The police are investigating the matter but it is too early to reach any conclusions as of now. Nano too, has released a statement where they have claimed that there is no fault in their framework and the Nano platform and cryptocurrencies are safe to use. They have stated that the fault lies in the software used by the BitGrail cryptocurrency exchange.
Nano has claimed they had no idea about this hack as well as about BitGrail declaring insolvency. Francesco Firano, the owner of BitGrail informed Nano about the hack on the 8th of February. The exchange froze all withdrawals and deposits immediately after they found out about this theft. Interestingly, Nano is now claiming that Firano and BitGrail were planning to declare insolvency for quite some time and had been misleading the Nano core team. Nano’s statement reads:
We now have sufficient reason to believe that Firano has been misleading the Nano Core Team and the community regarding the solvency of the BitGrail exchange for a significant period of time.
This additional bit of information could perhaps be indicative of the fact that it was in fact the exchange which was behind this theft. However, as of this writing, no clear conclusions have been arrived at and everything remains a speculation for now.
The timing of this theft could have a major negative impact on Nano. The company, which was formerly known as RaiBlocks recently re-branded to Nano, with an all-new approach towards the company. However, 17 Million tokens being stolen is likely to have an impact on the company’s operations. Stay tuned with us for more details on this story as it breaks.