The entire cryptocurrency market slumped on average by more than 10 percent yesterday. The cause was the rumor that the popular cryptocurrency exchange Binance was hacked. Binance experienced a sudden pump from Viacoin and then suspended his payouts for a short time.
There were rumors yesterday about a hack from Binance. Users of the stock market reported in the media in numerous ways that their crypto currencies were traded without their permission or have completely disappeared. It was suggested that Binance’s Trading API (programming interface) was hacked to grant trading bots and third-party services access to the Exchange’s user accounts. Two-factor authentication would have been bypassed by API access.
As a result of the rumors, there was a mass panic. The entire market crashed and crashed within an extremely short time on average by more than 10 percent. For example, the Bitcoin price dropped suddenly from over $ 10,700 to under $ 9,700. Total market capitalization plummeted from USD 429 to 388 billion within a very short time. The winnings of the last week were thus made again to niece.
The cause of the crash was not, as many social media users suspect, a hack of Binance. Instead, as announced by Binance, hackers have been launching a phishing attack since January 2018, stealing the credentials of many Binance users over a long period of time. The phishing attack was via Unicode domains, which looked very similar to binance.com. Many users have fallen for this trap and have posted their access data on the Fake websites.
The access data allowed the hacker or traders to generate trading API keys. Yesterday, hackers used the Trading API to place a large number of Viacoin (VIA) purchases within 2 minutes. The goal was on the one hand to push up the price in order to maximize their profits. On the other hand, presumably over the trades, the tracks should be blurred.
The trading volume of Viacoin rose from 116,000 euros to more than 9.3 million euros, the price of VIA rose within a few minutes from 2.22 euros to 11.06 euros (“Peak”). Fortunately, Binance’s automated risk management system worked. All payouts were stopped immediately.
Since the hackers could make no payments over the compromised accounts over the data, these had to transfer the stolen goods only on their own accounts. In the accounts of the hackers were submitted immediately after the attack also withdrawal requests, which were impossible because of the automatic payment lock. Worse could be prevented by Binance.
Once again, although fortunately the Binance risk management has taken hold, crypto currencies should only be kept on exchanges when actively traded with you. Incidentally, desktop, paper or hardware wallets are recommended. In addition, it should always be checked for your own protection against phishing attacks, if you call the “right” website.