On a Path to Recovery: Bithumb Reopens Deposits and Withdrawals
Following a disastrous security breach in June that led to losses of more than $30 million, Korean cryptocurrency exchange giant Bithumb has announced that it is set to resume deposit and withdrawal services on its platform. The announcement, which was made earlier today on Twitter, revealed that the services would be restored on August 4, 2018, at 11 a.m. KST.
Suspension and Maintenance
In June 2018, following the much-publicized hack that led to the hot-wallet theft, the platform temporarily disabled all currency transaction capabilities. Funds were hurriedly moved into cold storage wallets, and a moratorium was placed on all deposit and withdrawal services. The platform then announced some maintenance periods and security reviews, which led to significant downtime through much of July, although trading activities continued in between downtime periods.
Following a series of inspections carried out by the Korea Blockchain Association, Bithumb was certified as one of the 12 crypto exchanges that passed the check, out of 23 exchanges currently operating in Korea. Other crypto exchanges that passed the tests included Korbit, Huobi Korea, OKEx and Upbit, but the crypto market particularly welcomed Bithumb's return because it was Korea's largest crypto exchange by volume before the hack.
Due to the fund movement restrictions put in place after the hack, customers were unable to move their funds, and this had a knock-on effect on the wider Korean crypto industry, as many investors saw the hack and the subsequent KBA inspections as an indictment of the security of Korean crypto platforms. Traders and other stakeholders will no doubt hope that Bithumb's return to normalcy will be a shot in the arm for Korean crypto investment sentiment.
Bithumb Recovery Timeline
In a blog post, Bithumb stated that, although services are being restored, a few digital assets will not be included in the first wave of restorations, pending a return to market normalcy.
The statement reads in part:
Some cryptocurrencies with a significant price difference of about 10 percent between Bithumb market and standard market will be opted out for this customer's asset. When services return to normal, rapid changes in price are expected. Therefore resuming normal services for such cryptocurrencies will be put on hold for the time being.
Going further, the statement revealed that 10 cryptocurrencies have been approved for the first round of service restoration: Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Ripple (XRP), Ethereum Classic (ETC), Qtum (QTUM), Litecoin (LTC), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Monero (XMR), Zcash (ZEC) and Mithril (MITH).
Finally, the statement clarified the situation of uncredited deposit funds made while services were suspended, stating that such monies will be credited to holders’ accounts.