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Revealing Your Digital Currency Holdings Online Is a Horrible Idea




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This week a cryptocurrency trader who traded altcoins and bitcoin on the digital currency exchange Bittrex lost over 7 BTC ($18,000 USD) while recording the entire theft. The trader from New Zealand revealed his testimony and believes he was hacked by malicious bots created to steal digital assets.

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A Trader’s Worst Nightmare

A trader named Shayne who calls himself “Crypto is Key” detailed an unusual experience watching his Bittrex account that held eleven BTC drain down to four BTC. The victim explains the Bittrex account was shared with a buddy of his who helped him make decisions and trades. Additionally, he says the account was protected with two-factor authentication and a very long password. However, when he woke up and logged into Bittrex, he noticed his holding were being sold, and his account was missing 7 BTC which was withdrawn to an unknown address.

“Everyone’s worst nightmare concerning trading is losing their wealth to thieves,” explains the Bittrex trader.

Last night I was in the nightmare, and what’s worse is I had to fight while they tried to take my last four Bitcoin.

Shayne Vows to Never Store Large Amounts of Digital Currency on Exchanges

During the recorded video the trader and his buddy were logged into the Bittrex account while the thief was siphoning his digital assets. The victim thought the hacker might have been a bot or script program that worked very fast to sell his altcoins at spot price and then withdrew the bitcoins after each sale. The “fight” Shayne described, shows the trader continuously stopping open orders and trying to remove the remaining digital assets held on Bittrex. Every time he tried to cancel the order the hacker or bot was able to resume selling the remaining digital assets, but Shayne was able to recover 4 BTC in the end.

Revealing Your Digital Currency Holdings Online Is a Horrible Idea
Shayne and his trading partner watching their Bittrex account get siphoned.

“I think sometimes these things happen to make us stronger and to be very well prepared to help prevent it happening again — I know now I will never leave any large amounts on any exchange ever again,” details Shayne. “This lesson has been a very hard one and one I will never forget, but I will not give up, and I will come back even stronger again.”

This has now lit a fire under my ass and I will not let this beat me mentally. I hope you watch the video and you can take something from it and it makes you aware of how dangerous holding any coins on any exchange can be.

Accidently Revealing API Keys Through Trading Videos

The interesting aspect of the occurrence was that Bittrex allowed multiple IP addresses to log into one account. Moreover, according to a follow-up post from Shayne, the trading platform Bittrex detailed the account was compromised due to the hacker gaining access to the trader’s API keys. “Checking your account history we can see however that these sales are happening through API calls,” explains Bittrex. Shayne details the API keys may have been leaked when he aired trading videos via his Youtube channel.

“So it seems somehow my API keys were stolen. Now, this could have quite possibly been my fault as I have used API keys in video tutorials before and may have somehow deleted the wrong ones and not double checked before I uploaded the video,” Shayne concludes.

The story reaffirms the fact that people revealing their digital assets to the general public via social media, forums and Youtube videos clearly creates targets for hackers and unfortunately many victims of cryptocurrency theft.

What do you think about Shayne’s loss on Bittrex and how he accidentally shared his API keys on video? Let us know in the comments below.


Images via Shutterstock, Shayne’s blog post, and Youtube.


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