Can you hack cash aka paper currency? Of course you can’t, same is the case with Bitcoin protocol. You can’t hack electronic cash but you ...
Can you hack cash aka paper currency? Of course you can’t, same is the case with Bitcoin protocol. You can’t hack electronic cash but you can rob a bank or an exchange. Similarly you can’t hack the bitcoin algorithm but you can hack the digital banks (wallets) and exchanges.
The answer is: Bitcoin is surely the most vulnerable currency ever made in history!
This proves how secure digital currency is. Bitcoin users are undoubtedly constantly subject to theft, scams, and frauds, which is made easier thanks to Bitcoin’s structure and lack of regulation.
Just to give you a bird-view of the popular bitcoin hacks and other cryptocurrency hacks from 2011-2018, I have created the table below to show you the so-called security aspect of cryptocurrencies with facts and figures.
Complete List of Cryptocurrency Hacks (2011-2018):
|Date||Crypto Service||Attack Type||Coins Stolen||Value (USD)|
|KICKICO (ICO)||Security breach||KICK||$8,000,000|
|Security breach||alt coins||$30,000,000|
|Security breach||alt coins||$40,000,000|
|Security breach||58 BTC||$540,000|
|Security breach||438 BTC||$3,300,000|
|Security breach||17,000,000 NANO||$195,000,000|
|Security breach||523,000,000 NEM||$534,000,000|
|2017 Dec||NiceHash(Marketplace)||Security breach||4,736 BTC||$62,000,000|
|2017 Nov||Bitcoin Gold (Wallet)||Scam/Inside Job||x*x BTC||$3,300,000|
|2017 Aug||Enigma (ICO)||Security breach||1,500 ETH||$500,000|
|2017 Jul||Parity multisig (Wallet)||Security breach||153,037 ETH||$32,000,000|
|2017 Jul||CoinDash (ICO)||Security breach||x*x ETH||$7,000,000|
|2017 Jul||Veritaseum (Wallet)||Security breach||36,000 VERI||$8,000,000|
|2016 Aug||Bitfinex (Exchange)||User wallets/ |
|2016 Jul||Steemit (Social Site)||User accounts||multi cryptos||$85,000|
|DAO (Smart Contract)||Security Breach||3.6 million ETH||$50,000,000|
|2016 May||Gatecoin (Exchange)||hot wallet/ |
|250 BTC + 185,000 ETH||$2,000,000|
|2016 Mar||ShapeShift (Exchange)||inside job||557 BTC||$230,000|
|2016 Mar||Cointrader |
|hot wallet/ |
|2015 Feb||Bter (Exchange)||cold wallet/ |
|2015 Feb||Exco.in (Exchange)||cold wallet/ |
|2015 Feb||Kipcoin (Exchange)||cold wallet/ |
|2015 Feb||796 (Exchange)||cold wallet/ |
|2015 Jan||Bitstamp (Exchange)||hot wallet/ |
|2014 Dec||Blockchain.info (Wallet)||user wallets (bug, R values)||267 BTC||$101,000|
|2014 Dec||Mintpal (Exchange)||inside job||3,894 BTC||$3,208,412|
|2014 July||Cryptsy (Exchange)||inside job||13,000 BTC + 300,000 LTC||$9,580,000|
|2014 Mar||Flexcoin (Wallet)||hot wallet/ |
|2014 Mar||CryptoRush (Exchange)||cold wallet/ |
|2014 Feb||Mt.gox (Exchange)||hot & cold wallets/ |
|2013 Dec||Blockchain.info (Wallet)||2-factor authentication breach||800 BTC||$800,000|
|2013 Nov||Inputs.io (Wallet)||cold wallet/ |
|2013 Nov||BIPS (Wallet)||cold wallet/ |
|2013 Nov||PicoStocks (Exchange)||cold wallet/ |
|2012 Sep||Bitfloor (Exchange)||hot wallet/ |
|2012 May||Bitcoinica (Exchange)||hot wallet/ |
|2012 Mar||Linode (Webhosting)||inside job||46,703 BTC||$228,845|
|2011 Oct||Bitcoin7 (Exchange)||inside job||5,000 BTC||$25,000|
My calculator got stuck/hanged when I tried adding up the total amount of money stolen from bitcoin and ethereum community. Wonder if there is any other example of such vulnerable and bogus currency ever created in mankind’s history.
New security bugs are introduced every day and people are not that responsive to keep themselves updated with security breaches and install patches provided on emergency basis by Microsoft.
Meltdown and Spectre are some latest vulnerabilities that are considered as a serious threat to Bitcoin wallets and exchanges. According to these vulnerabilities’ discoverers:
“These hardware vulnerabilities allow programs to steal data which is currently processed on the computer. While programs are typically not permitted to read data from other programs, a malicious program can exploit Meltdown and Spectre to get hold of secrets stored in the memory of other running programs. This might include your passwords stored in a password manager or browser, your personal photos, emails, instant messages and even business-critical documents.”
Vulnerabilities such as Meltdown and spectre could easily be used to steal your passwords stored on a hot wallet or exchange. No matter how encrypted the wallet be, they provide little to no protection against such hacks. According to CoinKorea post:
“The biggest problem is that if an attacker exploits the vulnerability, it can not be blocked by encryption or vaccination.”
Such bugs will never stop coming and the hackers will always be one step ahead of security agencies in introducing new ways. WannaCry Ransomware attack is the recent example which affected more than 300,000 computers, across 150 countries, causing a loss of billions of dollars. And all that happened within a duration of just 4 days!