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South Korea and Hackers – A Fraught Relation

South Korea has sustained new spate of attacks on its crypto exchanges. One of the most prominent bastions of technological innovation, South Korea has been struggling to snuff out the bane of hackers who have been becoming extremely bold and impertinent. Why has the country struggled to contain the plague of hacking?

The Storm is Out of the Bottle

In the past two weeks alone, South Korea sustained more robberies and assaults on its crypto exchanges. The cryptocurrency community has not sat idly and has since started to vehemently critique the inability of exchanges to stave off attacks.

On June 9, Coinrail, the popular exchange in the country, announced that third-parties had gained access to its database, syphoning off $40 million worth of cryptocurrencies in the process.

Even though the number of stolen cryptocurrencies remains unknown, third-party auditors are already looking hard into the reasons that lead to the theft and the number of missing assets. Pundi X, the evaluating company, has posted on its blog, shedding more light on the event of June 9.

And while things definitely looked bad with Coinrail, on Une 20, Bithumb got hit by a hacker attack with the culprits managing to hightail it with as much as $31 million worth of cryptocurrencies. Bithumb has ensured all of its customers that their assets are stored in cold wallets, i.e. off the grid. Meanwhile, the operator also vowed that it will restore the losses that its customers had suffered.

However, the incessant attacks on South Korean companies have definitely ruffled the feathers of local investors, crypto owners, and enthusiasts in equal measure.

More than a Bet on Sustainability

As the climate is shaping up, South Koreans are growing increasingly angry with how matters are handled and how often crypto exchanges become the victim of hackers. However, the government is now stepping up. Both the Korea Internet and Security Agency (KISA) and the Ministry of Science, Information, and Communication Technology are taking active measures to investigate the cause of the hack and help fight it.

South Korean officials have voiced their concerns with regards to the relative overcomplacency with which citizens have been swapping their FIAT currency for crypto goods. The repercussions of the hacks will certainly affect individuals who have invested a great deal of their personal wealth into crypto tokens.

This has not been the first time that major heists have been reported in South Korea. Youbit, another behemoth on the Korean market, was assaulted in December 2017, and lost $73 million worth of crypto goods, forcing the company to file for bankruptcy.

In the case of the Youbit hack, the Wall Street Journal reported that North Korean hackers were the most likely culprits behind the attack. It’s not unlikely for North Korea to be dabbling with cryptocurrencies, especially given the stringent international sanctions that the regime has to endure.

The anonymity and traceability of cryptocurrencies make them a perfect fit for North Korea, which can afford to purchase goods. Still, no-one has been yet suspected in the most recent attacks.

Janneke Eriksen

Janneke is a writing ninja and has vast experience in journalism, specifically in the crypto space. As a blockchain believer and avid Bitcoin fan, she’s incredibly excited to share to our readers the latest news around so they are always updated wherever they are.