This week has had an array of negative headlines for various exchanges across Asia. From a huge hack to closures, the week has not had many positive stories.
Here is a break down of the top five stories from across Asia in the past week:
1. Upbit Hack sees $50 Million gone
South Korean exchange, Upbit, has had 342,000 Ethereum (ETH) stolen from its hot wallet. The exchange, which is a subsidiary of Kakao revealed the news on November 27th via an official statement written by Lee Seok-woo, the CEO of Upbit’s operator, Dunamu.
The statement claimed the Ethereum was “transferred from the Upbeat Ethereum Hot Wallet to an unknown wallet.” Upbit claimed they had protected their customer’s assets and that their remaining ones were now being stored in a cold wallet. Deposits and withdrawals will take two weeks to resume the company said.
2. Changpeng Zhao Vs The Media
Binance CEO, Changpeng Zhao (CZ), has gone after the media and rival Chinese exchanges in an explosive attack. The drama began when CZ refuted an article from The Block who claimed that Binance had their Shanghai office raided. CZ tweeted that Binance doesn’t have an office in Shanghai and claimed this was one of many negative articles no doubt planned by rival Chinese exchanges.
The tweet drew support and criticism. Many of CZ’s fans leapt to his defence, while others including Asia Crypto Today voiced their concern for what this meant for the industry going forward and how the exchange can so brazenly cry fake news when called into account. An excellent evaluation from Fortune showed the need for a strong media and condemned the future implications of CZ’s comments.
3. India makes Blockchain Strategy
India is following in the footsteps of the other Asian giant, China, by taking on a blockchain strategy. The technology behind cryptocurrencies has been used in a small capacity in some Indian states, but now it is gaining traction on a national scale.
India’s Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) has voiced its vocal support for blockchain and is said to be drawing up a “National Level Blockchain Framework.” The application will apparently be for governance, banking, finance and cybersecurity, with other scenarios to be thought about too.
4. Exchanges across China are shutting down
As we reported last week, China has begun cracking down on crypto exchanges and businesses as Beijing cracks the whip and tightens its crypto ban. Around 39 exchanges were shut down in Shenzhen and now the crackdown has continued.
Bitsoda, Btuex, and Akdex have both closed down. Many believe it is down to the crackdown in China, with Idax, another exchange shutting up shop in China, claiming the government agenda was the reason. Biss last month shut down and now ten of their staff are being held by authorities after they were charged with violation of Chinese capital controls.A Bloomberg report claimed this was the biggest clean up since 2017.
5. IDAX CEO Leaves Exchange in Mess
The CEO of exchange IDAX has gone missing, leaving the company without access to its cold wallets a report from CoinDesk has said. The exchange has asked its customers to stop using their services as their CEO has been missing for the past five days.
Deposits and withdrawals are currently banned and their customers left wondering what will happen next. As for the CEO, currently, no one knows his whereabouts. The exchanges close links to Shanghai and Chinese businesses could suggest he may be a part of the nationwide crackdown in China.