Cryptocurrency assets are very appealing, mostly because of their decentralized nature. Cryptocurrency transactions are not controlled by any centralized authority, which means there’s no intermediary to control or manipulate transactions between two parties in case of Cryptocurrency threats such as hacks.
Cryptocurrencies owe their success to the blockchain technology. Blockchain transactions are immutable and much faster and cheaper compared to traditional remittance services.[REITs]
However, despite the benefits of crypto, there are some threats that every user should be aware of. Criminals keep lurking around every corner, and they’ve been quite active in recent years.
Cryptocurrency Threats Keep Surging
According to CipherTrace, a US cybersecurity company, at least $356 million worth of cryptocurrencies was stolen in the first quarter of 2019 alone.
This is a huge increase in cryptocurrency threats from the last year, not to mention the year before.
In 2018, a staggering $1.7 billion worth of cryptocurrencies was stolen, $950 million of which were stolen from stock exchanges. This is a great surge from $266 million that was stolen in 2017.
The threats are obviously surging at a very fast pace. Dave Jevans, the CEO of CipherTrace, told in an interview that all the thefts aren’t only coming from hackers. Many are also connected to frauds and inside jobs.
This means that a great deal of the cryptocurrencies stolen over the years may have gone into the pockets of companies that were conducting exit scams.
As a matter of fact, CipherTrace also reported that 97% of criminal Bitcoin flows into various crypto exchanges that are not regulated. The exit scammers love jurisdictions that have poor anti-money laundering laws and regulations. Such scammers head there the minute they deprive users and investors of crypto assets.
Apart from exit scams, hidden mining is also posing a huge threat to owners of cryptocurrency assets. As you’ll see in the infographic below, over 4 million hidden mining threats were uncovered in the third quarter of 2018 alone.
What Does the Future Hold?
The first cryptocurrency ever, Bitcoin, was founded in 2009. Satoshi Nakamoto invented Bitcoin, creating a peer-to-peer electronic cash system that was never even meant to become a currency.
A decade later, crypto is still in its infancy. There are so many security threats buzzing around it, and they keep increasing year after year, yet it still hasn’t been properly regulated.
Perhaps it’s time for central authorities to get involved and impose regulations that would root out all the threats. What do you think?
Feel free to share your take on the issue in the comments section, but first check out the infographic below to get a clearer picture of the latest cryptocurrency threats.
Image source: ICOPulse