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Japanese crypto exchange Zaif suffers $60M hack

Thu, 20 Sep 2018, 05:20 am UTC

Zaif, a Japanese cryptocurrency exchange operated by Tech Bureau, is the latest victim of a major hack in which it lost 6.7 billion yen (nearly $60 million worth of cryptocurrency), including 5,966 bitcoins, CoinDesk reported.

The exchange has suspended deposit/withdrawal of multiple virtual currencies and settlement services.

In an official statement on the matter, Zaif said that it identified unusual outflow of funds on its platform around 17:00 Japan time on September 14. Soon after, it suspended asset deposit and withdrawal services.

In its investigations, the company found that hackers with unauthorized access were able to drain nearly $60 million in bitcoin, bitcoin cash, and MonaCoin from its hot wallets. However, it added that the exact amount of bitcoin cash and MonaCoin lost in the hack is currently being investigated.

“As soon as the quantity of the lost virtual currency is determined, we will report it promptly,” it added (loosely translated).

Of the stolen funds, the exchange said that its own assets “are approximately 2.2 billion yen, and the virtual currency equivalent to customer's assets is about 4.5 billion yen.”

Tech Bureau, which had received a business improvement order from the Financial Services Agency (FSA), said that it has reported the incident as a criminal case to local authorities for further investigation. Zaif has entered into an agreement with Fisco Digital Asset Group, a group company of Japan-listed firm Fiscal, to receive a $44.5 million investment in exchange for a major share of ownership.

This is the second hack of a Japanese cryptocurrency exchange this year. In January, Coincheck lost around $520 million in NEM tokens to hackers. Since then, the FSA ramped up its efforts to ensure that domestic crypto exchanges have appropriate security measures in place.

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