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A cryptocurrency exchange had $3.5 million stolen — and thinks its security chief ran off with the money

April 14, 2018


Indian cryptocurrency exchange Coinsecure has lost over $3.5 million and is blaming its head of security.

In a message posted to its website Thursday, the company said that its Chief Security Officer (CSO) Amitabh Saxena was extracting a cryptocurrency known as bitcoin gold in order to distribute it to customers. But Coinsecure claimed the funds were lost in the process.

Director Mohit Kalra has sent a letter to Indian authorities about the incident. In the document posted on the company’s website, Kalra said that 438.318 bitcoin have gone missing. This equates to just over $3.5 million at Friday’s bitcoin price.

Users’ funds were kept in a secure bitcoin wallet and the private keys were kept by Saxena and Kalra. Private keys are essentially required to send cryptocurrency out of a storage wallet. Having the private key allows you to move money.

“As the private keys are kept with Dr Amitabh Saxena, we feel that he is making a false story to divert our attention and he might have a role to play in this entire incident,” the letter written by Kalra said.

“The incident reported by Dr Amitabh Saxena does not seem convincing to us. Dr Amitabh Saxena also has an Indian passport and he might fly out of the country soon. Therefore, his passport should be seized so he cannot fly out of the country.”


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