• Randy Sklar

$52 Million in Bitcoin … Gone


Bitcoin Hack Has Many Asking Questions

On Dec. 6, 2017, approximately $52 million worth of bitcoin disappeared from the Slovenian-based business NiceHash. The company, which allows users to sell their computing power to help others mine virtual currencies, had gotten caught up in the massive growth of the brand-new frontier of cryptocurrency. In fact, the growth was so staggering that when the 4,465 bitcoins were stolen, they were worth over 15 times more than they were at the beginning of 2017. But cryptocurrency growth wasn’t the only surprise in store for NiceHash customers.

CRIMINAL CTO

As an international investigation began into the theft, NiceHash customers were surprised to learn that CTO Matjaz Skorjanc was a convicted cybercriminal. In 2010, Skorjanc was sentenced to almost five years in prison for creating malicious malware that was used to hack millions of personal computers. His notoriety didn’t stop there. He sold this malware on a major web forum that he himself created for cybercriminals to use to do their business.

HACKING SUSPECTS

Due to his background as a cybercriminal, the first place authorities looked was at CTO Skorjanc. He adamantly denied any involvement. Skorjanc’s history seemed like another clue. Could his technology or security have been compromised by his past interactions? One source stated that the address had been traced back to Korea. The suspects seem to be scattered all over the globe. With such a complex investigation, many customers are wondering if they’ll ever see their money again.

WHERE DO WE GO NOW?

While NiceHash pursues all options and the authorities work to find the missing loot, customers are left with empty pockets and little faith. Even if the bitcoins are returned, many customers feel violated by the insecurity and lack of trust resulting from the hack. They are frustrated that NiceHash hired a criminal CTO. As a result, they no longer wish to do business with the company.

As bitcoin generates more opportunities for financial growth, it also presents more security concerns. This is why it’s so important to be well-protected. If hackers live in a house of technology, then cryptocurrency is in the same neighborhood. Is your cyberhome protected?

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