Cryptocurrencies have gained widespread popularity in recent years, and with this surge in interest has come a rise in nefarious activity. From hacking to scamming, there have been a number of shocking cryptocurrency-related incidents that have caught the attention of both the media and the general public. Here are some of the most shocking examples of cryptocurrency hacks and scams that have occurred in recent years:
- The Mt. Gox Hack: In 2014, the Mt. Gox exchange, which was at the time the largest Bitcoin exchange in the world, was hacked and lost 850,000 Bitcoins, worth over $450 million at the time. The hack, which was due to a security breach, caused the exchange to collapse and left many investors out of pocket.
- The Coincheck Hack: In 2018, the Coincheck exchange in Japan experienced a hack that resulted in the loss of over 500 million NEM coins, worth approximately $534 million at the time. This hack, which was also the result of a security breach, was one of the largest in cryptocurrency history and sent shockwaves through the industry.
- The BitGrail Hack: In 2018, the BitGrail exchange in Italy suffered a hack that resulted in the theft of 17 million Nano coins, worth approximately $170 million at the time. This hack, caused by a security breach, led to the exchange’s shutdown and left many investors out of pocket.
- The NiceHash Hack: In 2017, the NiceHash cryptocurrency mining platform was hacked and lost over 4,000 Bitcoins, worth approximately $60 million at the time. This hack, due to a security breach, caused the platform to temporarily shut down while it worked to secure its systems.
- The Cryptopia Hack: In 2019, the Cryptopia exchange in New Zealand was hacked and lost over $16 million in various cryptocurrencies. This hack, caused by a security breach, resulted in the exchange’s shutdown while it worked to secure its systems.
- Ponzi Schemes: Ponzi schemes are fraudulent investment schemes that promise investors high returns with little to no risk. These schemes often target vulnerable individuals and can be particularly devastating when involving cryptocurrencies. One well-known example of a cryptocurrency Ponzi scheme is the OneCoin scam, which defrauded investors of over $4 billion.
- Exit Scams: Exit scams, also known as ICO scams, involve the creators of a cryptocurrency or initial coin offering (ICO) disappearing with the funds raised during the ICO. One well-known example of an exit scam is the Confido ICO, which raised over $375,000 in 2017 before disappearing without a trace.
- SIM Swapping: SIM swapping involves a perpetrator taking over a victim’s phone number, which they can then use to access the victim’s accounts. This type of attack has been used to target cryptocurrency investors, allowing the perpetrator to access and steal from the victim’s cryptocurrency accounts.
- Phishing Attacks: Phishing attacks are a form of cybercrime that involve the sending of an email or message that appears to be from a legitimate source but is actually designed to trick the victim into giving away sensitive information or downloading malware. These attacks have been used to target cryptocurrency investors, with perpetrators sending fake emails or messages claiming to be from legitimate exchanges or offering fake investment opportunities.
It is important for individuals interested in investing in cryptocurrencies to be aware of these types of threats and to take steps to protect themselves. This can include using strong and unique passwords, enabling two-factor authentication, and being cautious of any suspicious emails or messages. By taking these precautions, individuals can help to protect themselves and their investments from these shocking cryptocurrency hacks and scams.