In the public announcement, SBI apologized for the delay and explained that the company had to postpone the launch of the exchange for security improvement purposes.
“We decided that it will take some extra time to further strengthen security measures, assets management, and customer management systems to ensure the protection of cryptocurrency exchange users,” SBI wrote in the announcement.
SBI Group first revealed its plans to launch cryptocurrency exchange SBI Virtual Currencies in October, 2016. In December, 2017 Cointelegraph reported that SBI announced its partnership with Bitcoin trading platform Huobi to launch the exchange in early 2018.
SBI’s move to boost the exchange’s security system is likely in part motivated by the massive $534 mln hack of one of the largest Japanese cryptocurrency exchanges Coincheck on Jan. 26. “The biggest theft in the history of the world” forced Japan’s Financial Services Agency (FSA) to increase the scrutiny of cryptocurrency exchanges, with particular attention to computer system safety measures and the management of customers assets.