A study made by the CipherTrace, a cryptocurrency security firm, has found that the amount of cryptocurrency robbed has increased three times more compared to the amount that was robbed last year, according to an article published by Bloomberg; this mostly due to the enormous quantities of money siphoned through some high-level hacks that hit exchanges earlier this year. According to the report, hackers are being more and more efficient at identifying security vulnerabilities and taking advantage of them.
CipherTrace is one of the leading organizations in the business of cryptocurrency security and blockchain tracing and forensics, meaning that they have the possibility of studying what happens with stolen cryptocurrencies when a hack occurs, to a certain extent. In the report released by them, they reveal that cryptocurrency theft has increased from 266 million dollars last year to more than 760 million dollars so far this year; and increment of almost 300%.
With more than one thousand cryptocurrencies out there, some with lax security procedures or just bad security programming, it is increasingly difficult for these security firms to effectively protect exchange and clients from potential attackers. Earlier this year, a Japanese exchange called Coincheck suffered a massive hack that made them lost more than 500 million dollars worth in cryptocurrency. It was the highest profiled hack that has happened this year.
The cryptocurrency market is a multibillionaire enterprise, and any enterprise that moves that much money is destined to draw some unwanted attention. David Jevans, CEO of CypherTrace, said that the same market expansion has attracted a new type of cybercriminals that want to take advantage of the market to make some profit. About this he stated:
“THERE ARE SO MANY CRYPTOCURRENCIES NOW, AND THEY ARE WORTH SO MUCH MONEY, AND THERE ARE SO MANY EXCHANGES GLOBALLY …WE’VE SEEN NOT JUST TRADITIONAL CYBER GANGS BUT WE’VE SEEN A NEW SET OF CRIMINALS ENTER THIS SPACE,”
He also referred to regulation as an inevitable thing and said that could be a double sided sword being good for protecting investors, but bad for the market overall. Expect these kinds of crimes to keep rising, because like Jevans said: “It’s a lot easier than robbing banks”.