Exclusive: Following ‘Security Breach,’ Bancor Expects to Be Online in 24 Hours

Decentralized cryptocurrency platform Bancor, which experienced a “security breach” July 9, has told Cointelegraph that it expects to come back online within 24 hours.  

Bancor halted operations this Monday due to an investigation of a “security breach,” which involved more than $12 million. The platform confirmed the breach on its Twitter account, saying that “no user wallets were compromised.” The cybercriminals reportedly exchanged some of the tokens through conversion service Changelly. Sources familiar with the matter told Cointelegraph that the stolen tokens included Bancor’s native token BNT, about 25,000 Ethereum (ETH) ($12.2 million), and 300,000 Pundi X (NPXS) ($1,200).

While an official statement on the breach will be released following the investigation, Bancor head of communications Nate Hindman told Cointelegraph that the platform should be back online within 24 hours. According to Hindman, Bancor is coordinating with a number of industry players to develop tools and technology in order to help the industry collaborate more effectively when thefts occur:

“These mechanisms include a real-time blacklist that tracks offending addresses and stolen assets, as well as an emergency fund that compensates projects when thefts occur. There is plenty more to do here and we look forward to working with our peers across the industry to make everyone stronger and smarter as we move forward together. Collaboration is not just a concept, it’s a practice - and we are grateful for the support and assistance.”

When asked whether it is possible to completely prevent these kinds of security breaches, Hindman compared exchange security to a game of cat and mouse. He explained that thieves become more mature and sophisticated along with the industry and projects. Hindman emphasized that digital currency platforms can outwit criminals through collaborative effort:

“Together we stand in our efforts to create better tools that prevent thieves from committing crimes and utilizing stolen funds, and better processes for analyzing situations and informing users and relevant parties when they occur.”

Last week, co-founder of Ethereum Vitalik Buterin criticized centralized exchanges, saying that he hopes they will “burn in hell.” When asked his opinion on the matter, Hindman said that there is a place for both centralized and decentralized systems in the industry, underlining the importance of community coordination and improvement, rather than creating opposing factions between different types of solutions. However, Hindman concluded that, in his opinion, decentralized solutions are the future of blockchain and value exchange.