Just as the fragile cryptocurrency market begun seeing some consistent buying volume on Wednesday (KST), it was wiped out near-instantly after one of the world’s most popular crypto exchanges, the Seoul-based Bithumb fell victim to a successful hack; losing 35 billion won (~$31.5 million USD) worth of virtual currency.

The funds, held by Bithumb in hot wallets so as to accommodate customers who keep “their” balances with the exchange for convenience, were seized between “last night and today (Wednesday),” stated the popular Korean exchange their press release (translated from South Korean).

The crypto exchange also alerted impacted customers that they will be wholly compensated (by using part of their capital reserves). They also notified readers that “all our assets are [securely safe] in Bithumb’s cold wallet.” Deposit and withdrawal features were temporarily disabled whilst Bithumb investigated the hacking incident.

News From Bithumb Sees BTC Succumb

As news broke at ~1:00 AM (UTC), cryptocurrencies endured a harsh marketwide sell-off, led by Bitcoin (BTC) which fell by roughly $200 within the hour, pushing it under $6,600. Per TradingView, BTC has found support back above this daily low and is currently tracking at $6,615.

Prior to the Bithumb announcement, the rejuvenated $293 billion crypto market looked on-track for a $300 billion valuation level, but instead slumped by about $10 billion as traders swiftly reacted to the unwelcome news.

Crypto Influencers Have Say

It appeared that Charlie Lee (Creator, Litecoin) was not overly surprised by the news of Bithumb having incurred a hack, given his below-tweet. The Litecoin inventor stressed the recommendation of purchasing “a hardware wallet like Ledger Nano or Trezor,” in a later tweet, adding that “they are easy to use.”

Also quick to voice their opinion was Charlie Shrem (Founding Director, Bitcoin Foundation), who, in referring to how Bithumb is covering all of their affected customers’ losses, noted that “our industry is getting better and stronger.”

Tweet Deletion Gets (Bi)thumb Down

Many community members noticed that Bithumb took to deleting their original tweet revealing that they’d realized “about $30,000,000” worth of cryptocurrencies had been stolen.

Two Weeks, Two Korean Exchanges Hacked

In a blow to the young industry’s reputation, news of Wednesday’s Bithumb hacking incident came after the lesser-known South Korean crypto trading platform, Coinrail, lost some $37 million worth of virtual coins and tokens to cyber-thieves little more than a week ago.

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