Mt.Gox Bitcoin Exchange Taken Offline
Last Monday the bitcoin trading website Mt.Gox was taken offline putting at risk millions of dollars of investors’ money. At the same time as taking the site offline, the exchange also deleted its Twitter account and the CEO, Mark Karpeles, resigned from the Bitcoin Foundation’s board of directors.
Unsurprisingly the news caused a 3% fall in the value of bitcoin to about $490, the lowest level since November.
At present it is not known what caused the shutdown and the site has not provided any comments or statements. However, there is an unverified document, “Crisis Strategy Draft”, circulating online which says that the site lost 744,408 of its users’ bitcoins (about $367 million) and that the site is planning to rebrand itself as Gox.
The site has been in trouble over recent weeks as its developers hadn’t spotted a loophole which allowed attackers to fool Mt.Gox with a scheme like a receipt fraud. As soon as this was discovered the site stopped traders from pulling their money and has not allowed access to it since.
In a joint statement several other bitcoin exchanges said, “This tragic violation of the trust of users of Mt.Gox was the result of one company’s abhorrent actions and does not reflect the resilience or value of Bitcoin and the digital currency industry”.