Cryptsy, Shapeshift, Gatecoin, Bitfinex.
What do all these exchanges have in common? More than 130,000 BTC ($73,818,875 at today’s prices) has collectively been stolen from them in 2016. Hacks and heists at bitcoin exchanges happen so often that it’s becoming less surprising when a new one takes place.
However, just because the routine has dulled the impact doesn’t mean it isn’t being felt. When a heist does happen, investors still face significant losses, negative news continues to drive away consumers and new pressures emerge for entrepreneurs looking to launch new products.
Jerry Brito, executive director of Coin Center, told CoinDesk that these sorts of events make his organization’s job harder. The non-profit cryptocurrency research and advocacy group, he said, is forced to explain the differences between a compromised intermediary and the security of the core network.
“Major hacks put pressure on consumer protection regulators who haven’t yet acted on digital currencies to do so, and that pressure can make them less receptive to arguments for a light touch approach.”
And with headlines suggesting that bitcoin itself is hacked, it can continue to be difficult for entrepreneurs and advocates to educate regulators.
Because of the immutable nature of bitcoin transactions, though, and the public nature of the blockchain, bitcoin continues to