Cryptocurrency theft sees sharp rise during COVID-19 pandemic
Data researched by Trading Platforms UK indicates that the value of cryptocurrency hacks and thefts between 2019 and 2020 increased by 38.38% from $370.7m to $513m.
Over the last five years, the value was highest in 2018 at $950m, an increase of 257.14% from $266m in 2017.
The analysis further highlights that between 2019 and 2020, the value of blockchain fraud and misappropriation declined by 57.77% from $4.4bn to $1.3bn.
Cumulatively in 2019, the value of both cryptocurrency theft and blockchain fraud was $4.5bn, while last year, it dropped to $1.9bn.
The drop potentially points to a maturing cryptocurrency sector with developing systems able to detect fraudulent activities.
Hacker innovating new means to steal digital assets
The report puts into perspective the value of loss in cryptocurrency theft.
According to the research report: “The increase in the value of cryptocurrency theft comes even as the sector continues to mature with exchanges, wallets, and other digital assets custodians investing in their security mechanisms against hacking. Most custodians have also established relationships with law enforcement making it easy to trace any fraudulent activity almost instantly.
“However, the rise in crypto theft value is an indicator that hackers are also innovating new means to outpace the current security measures.”
The current cryptocurrency hacks and fraud might potentially become a thing of the past as the sector moves to close loopholes. Most projects in the sector are still in their experimental and speculative stage hence they are vulnerable to hacks and exploitations.