What happens when millions of dollars of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies disappear?

Buy, sell, or steal.

JUSTIN TALLIS/AFP/Getty Images

Tether, the company behind a cryptocurrency that’s pegged to the U.S. dollar, disclosed in a now-deleted announcement that hackers transferred almost $31 million worth of tokens from its treasury to an unauthorized bitcoin wallet on Sunday. Tether claims it has updated its software to prevent the tokens from leaving the wallet and is ultimately seeking to recover them. The stolen cryptocurrency will not be redeemable for U.S. dollars.

This latest incident follows in a long line of cryptocurrency cons that stretch back to bitcoin’s earliest days. Cryptocurrency is a digital asset introduced in 2008 by an anonymous inventor. People can transfer tokens amongst themselves through a decentralized network, which helps maintain the anonymity of the users. Cryptocurrency has become a hot commodity, even as financial experts debate whether it could be an actual alternative to fiat…


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