Coinsecure Says 438 Bitcoins Worth Rs. 19 Crores Stolen - Inside Job Suspected

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Bitcoins worth Rs 20 crore stolen in India's biggest e-heist

The company maintains that it has never been hacked or compromised and the incident took place when its CSO Dr. Amitabh Saxena was extracting BTG (Bitcoin Gold) to distribute to its customers. The company suspects an inside job. In a letter posted on the homepage of its website, Coinsecure says that its system has never been hacked and instead laid the blame exclusively on its chief security officer (CSO), Dr. Amitabh Saxena. The company has filed an FIR with the cyber cell accusing Amitabh Saxena, CSO of Coinsecure, of taking out money from the firm's wallet. 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 recruited Saxena as its Chief Scientific Officer in September 2017, citing credentials as a professor of Computer Science in Australia and previous tenures at Hewlett Packard (HP) and Accenture.

For the uninitiated, bitcoins wallets are digital wallets and a user typically gets a public address and a private key to send/receive coins. The public address is where the funds are deposited and received.

Bitcoins in India were trading at Rs 4,80,000, or about $7,359 on Friday, according to cryptocurrency exchange Coinome, well below its worldwide market price of about $7,771.

Karla told Times of India, "Private keys should have never been exported online".

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Delhi-based Coinsecure, founded by Mohit Kalra and Benson Samuel in mid-2014, launched its Bitcoin exchange on January 1, 2015, and has seen a fast-paced increase in the volume. A private key is a sophisticated form of cryptography that allows a user to access one's cryptocurrency. A case has been registered under the IPC and Section 66 of the IT Act.

"On 9th April 2018, we were informed by our CSO, Dr. Amitabh Saxena, that 438.318 (worth over $3 million) were stolen from our company's bitcoin wallet due to some attack".

The incident comes a week after the Reserve Bank of India issued strong regulation. Pantera Capital Management, one of the biggest cryptocurrency hedge funds, says $6,500 was the low of this bear market and Bitcoin will stay above that price for the majority of the next year, likely surpassing the previous record of nearly $20,000. It is estimated that in India, around 5 million people have invested a totalof approximately $2 billion in crytopcurrencies.

He added that if the bitcoin funds are not recovered, Coinsecure is willing to pay from its own pocket to compensate its customers.

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