Tether Hack: Cryptocurrency Worth $31 Million Stolen

Gladys Abbott
November 22, 2017

Tether has become part of the bitcoin ecosystem because it helps exchanges facilitate trades against currencies like the dollar, euro and yen, according to Arthur Hayes, chief executive officer of BitMEX, a cryptocurrency derivatives venue in Hong Kong.

The company, which helps exchanges convert fiat currency into tokens and aims to serve as a proxy for the US dollar, said in a statement on its website that $30,950,010-worth of its cryptocurrency USDT was taken from its treasury wallet on November 19 and sent to an unauthorized bitcoin address.

Bitcoin rose above $8300 for the first time today after dipping as low as $7800 when The company behind the cryptocurrency announced a $31 million theft. USDT is a cryptocurrency token pegged to the United States dollar, which is fully backed by assets in the company's reserve account. Users store and transfer globally and instantly, according to the website.

Tether's treasury wallet was robbed of over $30 million worth of tokens. Tether described the incident as a "malicious action by an external attacker". Tether already has a contingency plan in place, which will "flag" USDT in the hacker's possession and prevent them converting to Dollars. Because of this breach Tether have suspended their back-end wallet service until further notice. In addition, it said that it is providing new builds of Omni Core to the community, which would prevent any movement of the stolen coins from the attacker's address.

For those who are looking to take advantage of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies price fluctuations, some brokers provide traders with instant access to trade Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies.

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The theft appears to have shaken wider confidence in crypto markets. The price of Tether is tied to fiat currency, simplifying some of the legal difficulties cryptocurrency exchanges have trading physical money for its digital counterpart.

All in all the whole bitcoin market has taken a hit.

Bitcoin began 2017 at a value of about $1,000 per Bitcoin.

Tether is not exactly a big player in the cryptocurrency scene, like bitcoin or Ethereum are.

Etherium dropped around 5.5 percent and Bitcoin spinoff, Bitcoin Cash, dropped almost 6 percent. It also said that issuances of USDT haven't been affected by the attack, maintaining that the Tether reserve still fully backs all USDT.

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