Massive theft from Bitfinex exchange causes steep drop in market value

A mass of Bitcoins equaling roughly $77 million was recently stolen from Bitfinex, one of the largest cryptocurrency platforms. Bitfinex itself did not state the total loss of coins caused by the breach of security, but the full amount was later revealed by an employee who took it upon themselves to verify a loss of over 119,000 bitcoins. At the time of the hack, each coin was worth 650 USD.

Shortly after the story broke, the market value of Bitcoin dropped by 20%. Naturally, such a sizable and unprompted theft is likely to have made many Bitcoin shareholders less confident about the stability of the cryptocurrency. Though this is not the first time that a security breach has led to the theft of bitcoins, the fact that the platform was so seamlessly hacked after supposed security improvements has roused uncertainty. The security measures employed by the platform involved housing customer funds within segregated wallets.

Currently, Bitfinex has not made a statement clarifying how the wallets were compromised, and there haven’t been any confirmations on the exact factors that led to the hacking being possible. The company reported that they hadn’t been able to detect any signs of intrusion into their servers, and no other parties have claimed responsibility. For the time being, all activity on the platform has been frozen. Aside from the initial grand sum of 77 million taken by the hackers, no other funds are known to have been stolen in the time since.