Indian exchange Coinsecure blames exec for $3.5M BTC theft

Indian exchange Coinsecure blames exec for $3.5M BTC theft

Indian exchange Coinsecure blames exec for $3.5M BTC theft

The letter states that the exchange was notified, on 9 April 2018, by the CSO that 438.318 bitcoins (according to CryptoCompare, worth around $3.5 million at press time) had been stolen from the firm's bitcoin wallet "due to some attack". This is the first known hack instigated against the exchange, and the biggest in India so far.

Our CSO, Dr. Amitabh Saxena, was extracting BTG and he claims that funds have been lost in the process during the extraction of the private keys. According to the FIR filed with the Cyber Cell, Delhi, on April 10, the user funds are securely kept in the company's bitcoin wallet, the private keys to which are held by Amitabh Saxena, Coinsecure's Chief Scientific Officer (CSO) and Mohit Kalra, the CEO.

Coinsecure said its employee Amitabh Saxena would have had a role to play in the incident. "The incident reported by Dr. Amitabh Saxena does not seem convincing to us", read the FIR.

The letter assures its customers that they will not be affected because of the incident. A case has been registered under the IPC and Section 66 of the IT Act.

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Following the theft, the company investigated the matter, eventually realizing that the private keys of the offline wallet were leaked online and the entire transaction history had been erased.

"We regret to inform you that our Bitcoin funds have been exposed and seem to have been siphoned out to an address that is outside our control", the exchange, run by Secure Bitcoin Traders Pvt.

In a separate statement to the Times of India, the chief executive revealed that the private keys were exported online. It looks like a crime committed intentionally.

The company has launched a complaint with the Cyber Cell in Delhi and is also conducting an investigation with the help of cybersecurity experts. The fraud came to light when users who had bought bitcoins from the exchange were complaining that they were not able to access their funds for the past few days.

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Meanwhile, Coinsecure insists it will recover and reimburse customers who have seen their funds stolen.

The news has come as a jolt for cryptocurrency investors, after RBI recently announced that banks are no more allowed to deal with crypto currency exchanges.

Coinsecure adds that they will compensate all customers whether they recover the lost funds or not, adding that they will even use their own personal funds to do so.

The Reserve Bank of India has been wary of this form of unregulated currency trading.

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