After suffering a crippling hack earlier this week, Hong Kong-based bitcoin exchange Bitfinex said it may spread the loss among its users, including ones not directly impacted by the hack.
“We are leaning towards a socialized loss scenario among bitcoin balances and active loans to BTCUSD positions,” the exchange wrote in a blog post Friday. Bitfinex is still “settling positions and balances,” and will provide more details soon, it said.
This week’s attack is potentially the second-largest on an exchange since Japan’s Mt. Gox, and could further erode confidence in the virtual currency. Bitfinex was the largest exchange for U.S. dollar-denominated transactions over the past month, according to bitcoincharts.com, and the attack sent bitcoin’s price plunging more than 20 percent.
Efforts to contact Bitfinex were not immediately successful. A representative of the exchange, verified by Bloomberg, wrote on Reddit that users who either had bitcoin deposited at the exchange or who were in the process of lending U.S. dollars for margin trading would be affected.
“This solution is quite disappointing,” said Tian Jia, a Beijing-based programmer who lent about $440,000 U.S. dollars