BitMart CEO Says Stolen Private Key Behind $196M Hack

The crypto exchange’s CEO said the company will compensate affected users out of its own funds.

AccessTimeIconDec 6, 2021 at 7:33 a.m. UTC
Updated Dec 6, 2021 at 4:43 p.m. UTC

Eliza Gkritsi is CoinDesk's crypto mining reporter based in Asia.

Hackers were able to drain $196 million of crypto from crypto exchange BitMart by stealing a private key that opened two hot wallets, BitMart CEO Sheldon Xia tweeted on Monday.

  • Hackers stole $100 million worth of various cryptocurrencies on the Ethereum blockchain and $96 million on Binance Smart Chain, crypto security firm PeckShield revealed on Dec. 5.
  • BitMart has completed an initial security check and identified affected assets, and it plans to compensate users out of its own pocket, Xia said.
  • The exchange will announce a timetable to gradually continue deposits and withdrawals, he said, adding that he is “confident” they will resume on Dec. 7.
  • The hackers used decentralized exchange aggregator 1inch to swap stolen tokens for ether, and deposited ether funds to privacy mixer Tornado Cash to hide their identities, PeckShield said.
  • A $139 million hack of BXH Exchange in October was also the result of leaked administrator’s keys.

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Eliza Gkritsi is CoinDesk's crypto mining reporter based in Asia.

CoinDesk - Unknown

Eliza Gkritsi is CoinDesk's crypto mining reporter based in Asia.