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5 months ago

Bitcoin Stolen from Bitfinex years ago shows movement on the blockchain.

The level of patience some hackers possess is quite baffling. After so much trouble to steal funds, they wait a few years before they try to get their hands on the money?  After three years of lying dormant, stolen bitcoins have been spotted moving on the blockchain. The theft in 2016 remains unsolved and cost the exchange $60 million. The Bitfinex theft is said to be the largest loss of bitcoins by an exchange since the Mt. Gox hack in early 2014 (worth $350 million).

A Twitter account with Twitter handle ‘Whale_Alert’ noted last weekend that transfers in a series of transactions were made starting at 06:00 UTC Friday. First 172.54 BTC (about $1.37 million) moved from a wallet that had previously held funds taken in the 2016 Bitfinex hack.  According to subsequent tweets from the handle, they continued transferring throughout the day till 19:47 UTC, when they transferred $137,514. U.S. law enforcement retrieved 27.66270285 BTC that had been taken from Bitfinex in February of this year.

Bitfinex’s Leo token could have been the push for those transfers over the weekend according to Hard Fork as it allows for the anonymous return of stolen funds. A spokesperson of the exchange Anneka Dew, however, maintained that the exchange was not involved in the move. In her words: “We are not involved, and the movement is not tied to the procedure outlined in the UNUS SED LEO white paper,”

The nature of bitcoin wallets is in anonymity hence pointing to evidence of possible hacker activity after the theft. Since these wallets can be used for forensic analysis by blockchain sleuths it often doubles as a loophole that results in money laundering activity to hide the funds’ ultimate destination.

Bitfinex is a cryptocurrency exchange headquartered in Hong Kong, owned and operated by iFinex Inc. Their customers' money has been stolen or lost in several incidents, and this has caused them to be unable to secure normal banking relationships. They were indeed hit severely by the theft in 2016 but have still moved on in operation in their serving areas of about 52 countries.

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Credits – John Biggs

Anita O.

Lover of tech and blockchain.

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