Hackers stole €35 million from the Malta-registered company Binance on Monday.
In a statement from the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, it confirmed there had been a “large scale” data breach, allowing thieves to take more than 7,000 bitcoins in a single transaction.
The hackers also stole Application Programming Interface (API) keys, two-factor authentication codes as well as other information. The crypto-currency was moved from the company’s “hot wallet” – which is a system connected to the Internet - while a “cold wallet” is kept offline. This meant around two per cent of the exchange’s total bitcoin holdings was affected during the breach.
In a statement. CEO, Changpeng Zhao said: “All of our other wallets are secure and unharmed.” The company has also been providing updates on Twitter since the attack happened which included: “Not the best of days, but we will stay transparent. Thank you for your support!” as well as “While it is a very expensive lesson for us, it is nevertheless a lesson. It was our responsibility to safe guard user funds. We should own up it. We will learn and improve.”
The withdrawal triggered internal alarms after it was executed, and Zhao said the exchange froze withdrawals following the discovery. He also said deposits and withdrawals will remain suspended for the next week, trading will be re-enabled, though he cautioned that “the hackers may still control certain user accounts.”
Zhao also added that “Binance will conduct a thorough security review encompassing its systems and data during the next week.”