After the collapse of Mt. Gox, now Canada-based virtual currency exchange Flexcoin has been forced to close down.
Flexcoin said flaws in its software code enabled hackers to make off with bitcoins worth around 440,000 euros.
“As Flexcoin does not have the resources, assets, or otherwise to come back from this loss, we are closing our doors immediately,” it said in a statement.
A message posted on its website explained that the attack had exploited a flaw in its code on transfers between users and involved inundating the system with simultaneous requests to move coins between accounts.
“Flexcoin has made every attempt to keep our servers as secure as possible, including regular testing,” it said, adding it had repelled thousands of attacks over the past few years. “But in the end, this was simply not enough.”
The firm said it is working with law enforcement agencies to trace the source of the hack.
Not all has been lost; it will return to owners bitcoins that were held in computers not connected to the internet and which could not be raided.
Mt. Gox, once the world’s dominant bitcoin exchange, also blamed hacking for its losses. It has filed for bankruptcy protection in Japan and said it may have lost some 850,000 bitcoins due to hacking.
One bitcoin was valued at about $658 (480 euros) on Wednesday, according to Bitstamp, one of the largest exchanges for trading bitcoins.
Japan looks at bitcoin regulation
Japan will this week set out rules on how to handle bitcoins. It is the first sign that the government is taking action on regulating the virtual currency after the collapse last week of Tokyo-based Mt. Gox.
The cabinet will decide on Friday how to treat bitcoins under existing laws, people familiar with the matter told Reuters.
The sources said banks and securities firms will not be able to handle bitcoin as part of their main business, suggesting the virtual currency will be treated more as a commodity, like gold.
Japan has struggled to define its approach to bitcoin since the collapse of Mt. Gox.
The authorities there are also looking at possibly taxing bitcoin transactions, but it remains unclear how they could do this, given that one of the attractions of using bitcoin is that transactions are largely anonymous.
‘Consumer protection legislations needed’
“We haven’t yet thoroughly grasped the situation, but some kind of regulation is needed from the perspective of consumer protection, and we will also discuss (bitcoin) from the perspective of imposing an asset tax,” said Takuya Hirai, head of an IT panel in the ruling Liberal Democratic Party.
The panel heard on Wednesday from consultant Deloitte about bitcoin and from officials of the Consumer Affairs Agency, the Financial Services Agency (FSA) the Finance Ministry, central bank, Cabinet Office and the National Police Agency about the Mt. Gox collapse, Hirai told reporters.
The FSA and the Finance Ministry have said bitcoin is not a currency and doesn’t fall under their purview, while the Bank of Japan has said it was studying the bitcoin phenomenon with interest.
Hiroshi Mikitani, a prominent Japanese e-commerce billionaire and CEO of Rakuten Inc, expressed caution about trying to regulate the virtual currency. “They should not act hastily,” he said, according to Kyodo News. “As for whether we need regulations, they should first examine the situation a bit more and discuss it in depth.”
- 1euronews live TV - News | euronews : the latest international news as video on demand
- 2Chomsky – a rebel with a cause | euronews, world news
- 3Chomsky says US is world’s biggest terrorist | euronews, the global conversation
- 4[LIVE] Germanwings passenger jet crashes in southern France, 148 people on board – authorities | euronews, world news
- 5Europe is ‘bluffing’ over Greece-Russia relations – analyst | euronews, news
- 6French Alps plane crash treated as suicide and mass murder by co-pilot | euronews, world news
- 7Why is Bulgaria the EU’s most unhappy country? | euronews, world news
- 8Former IMF chief ‘under investigation for money laundering’ | euronews, world news
- 9Greece’s claim for war reparations from Germany explained | euronews, world news
- 10International news | euronews, latest international news
- 11eurovibes - a selection of Europe’s best music talent
- 12International tv news | euronews: European and International tv news bulletin
- 13Pope Francis washes Rome prisoners’ feet on Holy Thursday | euronews, world news
- 14ECB chief Mario Draghi unhurt after protest during speech | euronews, world news
- 15Reaching new heights: Parents in India scale walls to ‘help students cheat’ | euronews, world news
- 16Germanwings press conference mystery: what wasn’t he supposed to say? | euronews, world news
- 17French prosecutor: Germanwings co-pilot appears to have crashed plane deliberately | euronews, world news
- 18Woman carries can of water on her head along Paris marathon | euronews, world news
- 19European Union News | euronews: latest breaking news and headlines about European Union
- 20[Live updates] France plane crash: damaged black box ‘can provide information’ | euronews, world news
Wires > Business
- 11:08 CET Another crunch week in Greek bailout saga
- 09:31 CET India issues fresh tax notice to Vodafone – report
- 09:13 CET Foreign automakers double down on China bets despite slowing growth
- 08:57 CET Volkswagen exploring new budget models for China – exec
- 08:03 CET Lloyd’s of London targets Islamic insurance market
- 06:41 CET Comcast, Time Warner Cable to meet U.S. Justice Dept officials…
- 01:51 CET Conservatives aim to sell Lloyds shares to small investors
- 22:04 CET Risk of sharp reversal remains – Carney