A bitcoin exchange in Alberta, Canada, has been hacked. The exchange has gone offline, and their Twitter page has also gone offline. MapleChanges announced on Twitter that the funds had been taken and they cannot pay anyone back.
How it happened
The exchange had one hour before deleting their Twitter page and explained that a bug allowed some people to withdraw the funds in the exchange. This scenario is not new; it happened to Mt. Gox as well. However, both cases were handled differently. In the latter case, attempts were made to fix the damage. The exchange went as far as manipulating BTC price to attempt to recoup some lost funds before anyone discovered what was happening.
The Twitter account of the exchange had less than 2,000 followers.
Coinbase, one of the largest crypto exchanges, has more than one million followers on Twitter in contrast with this exchange.
Customers and experts fear exit scam
For a while, there hasn’t been a report of exit scams. They are mostly seen on the dark web, gambling, and exchanges. It starts with gathering trust, getting their funds in one spot and running off with the money. Running away with the money may be in the form a hack claim or just disappearing.
Sadly, the MapleChang “hack” appears like an exit scam.
Why is it an exit scam?
It looks like an exit scam because there was no need for the exchange to delete their social media page. It also appears as though the exchange was in debt to different depositors, but this is quite normal in the business world. This is where bankruptcy courts and insurance are for.
The short time span between the announcement of the so-called bug and the complete disappearance of the operators of the exchange is a clear sign.
The domain used by the exchange is also quite suspicious. It was registered by GoDaddy by someone called Flavius P. it is quite unusual to be so unprofessional especially when handling money for other people.
Also, the timing of the hacking is another important factor in determining whether it is a hack or a bug. If you check the recent stats of the site, they had more business than they usually have within the last week.