The hack and cybertheft of nearly 120,000 bitcoins from the exchange platform Bitfinex could scare away future investors in the cryptocurrency, experts warn.
Bitfinex announced that it had suspended trading on the platform Tuesday and that it had discovered a security breach. In all, 119,756 bitcoins were reportedly stolen, worth $72.3 million at the price when Bitfinex suspended trade.
Bitcoin prices have plunged on the news, going as low as $514 per bitcoin. The cryptocurrency's value has risen back to $576, but this is still well below July prices.
The day after the hack, Bitfinex restored some of the platform's function, allowing users to determine their losses. However, key functions, such as trading and withdrawing bitcoins, are still disabled.
This is the latest high-profile hack to affect bitcoin. In April, around $230,000 was stolen from the trading platform ShapeShift, while Hong-Kong based Gatecoin lost more than $2 million of cryptocurrency in May. The biggest ever hack was in 2014, when Tokyo-based exchange Mt. Gox revealed $450 million worth of bitcoin was stolen.