In the cryptocurrency world, exchanges remain a very profitable target for hackers and other types of criminals. In the case of QuickBit, a Swedish trading platform, a data breach took place, albeit it seems no money was stolen in the process. This is another stark reminder for users to not keep big sums of money on any crypto exchange for an extended period of time. Convenience should never trump security in this industry.
QuickBit Confirms the Oopsie
It is not the first nor the last time a cryptocurrency exchange will face some trouble down the line. These trading platforms control a lot of user funds on a daily basis, which makes them very attractive to hackers looking to score a quick buck. Over the past few years, there have been dozens of crypto exchange hacks, with stolen funds ranging from a few thousand dollars to several dozen million dollars. It is never a good development for the industry, yet it seems unlikely anything will change in the near future.
For users of the Swedish QuickBit exchange, things are not looking all that great either. Most victims will be pleased to hear there was no money stolen in the process, although a lot of other data may have been exposed to unauthorized third parties. More specifically, it is expected that one of the company’s databases was exposed, and criminals obtained names, email addresses, and physical addresses on 2% of the company’s customer base.
It appears this hack was made possible thanks to the company recently implementing a new system to vet clients’ backgrounds. It is not uncommon in the cryptocurrency exchange industry to see companies perform extensive background checks on their clients. Especially with the growing focus on preventing money laundering, such processes are no unnecessary luxury. QuickBit relies on a third-party system for this specific purpose, which somehow allowed hackers to bypass the company’s firewall and access the database in question.
Following this incident, the company’s IT team quickly identified the problem and ensured the security hole was patched properly. As such, similar incidents should not occur in the future, albeit it is too early to draw any real conclusions in this regard. QuickBit also claims none of the stolen information can be used to “hurt” clients of the exchange, albeit it is evident any sort of personal information can be abused in this day and age. Especially with the names and physical addresses exposed, a lot of harm can be done by third-parties.
For the time being, there is no official public report regarding this incident. QuickBit has confirmed the information will be released publicly, which allows anyone and everyone to review what has taken place exactly. It is unclear if this breach will affect the public’s opinion on the trading platform. While no funds were lost following this hack, a data breach still occurred. Such breaches are almost always avoidable, yet it seems the hacked server was accessible for “several days”, which is not a promising sign.
Rest assured this will not be the last time a cryptocurrency trading platform is attacked. These companies control user funds on their behalf, which means hackers could obtain hundreds, if not thousands of Bitcoin following a successful breach. While most companies are taking active precautions to negate such incidents, it is also evident new trading platforms pop up on a regular basis. As such, one has to wonder if all companies adhere to strict security guidelines. Incidents like these only confirm that is not always the case.