India's Biggest Bitcoin Heist: Coinsecure Reports Theft Worth $3 Million

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India's Biggest Bitcoin Heist: Coinsecure Reports Theft Worth $3 Million

The company claims that almost 438 bitcoins have been siphoned off by Amitabh Saxena, its Chief Scientific Officer (CSO) - as declared on the Coinsecure's website. According to The Economic Times, the exchange found that all the bitcoins that were stored offline had vanished. Instead, they are pointing a finger at their own chief security officer, Dr. Amitabh Saxena, who himself was the first to inform the company of the theft.

The company has launched a complaint with the Cyber Cell in Delhi and is also conducting an investigation with the help of cybersecurity experts.

New Delhi-based Coinsecure, India's leading cryptocurrency exchange, said in a police complaint that it lost almost 438 bitcoins worth over $3 million after most of its wallets were hacked.

The system wasn't hacked or compromised, it, however, noted.

"Our CSO, Dr. Amitabh Saxena, was extracting BTG and he claims that funds have been lost in the process during the extraction of the private keys", the release said, adding that they are doing everything they can to recover the funds.

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The FIR says, "As the private keys are kept with CSO Amitabh Saxena, we feel that he is making a false story to divert our attention and he might have a role to play in this entire incident". The police reportedly found that the private keys were exposed online for more than 12 hours and are checking if a malware infection led to the hack. "It looks like a crime committed intentionally", he added. "We have shared our suspicions with the Cyber Cell, and contacted specialists to find out the source of the hack and trace the bitcoins", TOI quoted Kalra as saying.

Late yesterday, Indian cryptocurrency exchange Coinsecure (which now seems like an ironic name) announced that the exchange had lost of some of its bitcoins during an exercize to distribute BTG to its customers. The complaint says that Kalra doesn't believe Saxena's explanation of the incident, and also urges authorities to seize Saxena's passport to keep him from fleeing the country.

Coinsecure, which boasts of over 200,000 users trading on its platform daily, said in its statement that around 438 bitcoins, which were stored in a password-protected virtual wallet were siphoned off to an unknown destination on the internet after the details were leaked online. "Irrespective of funds being recovered, we re-assure all our customers that you will be indemnified from our personal funds".

The Reserve Bank of India has barred banks from facilitating trade on virtual currencies and mandating them to unwind their existing relationship with exchanges within three months.

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