Hackers steal US$41 million worth of bitcoin from Binance exchange

Hackers stole bitcoin worth US$41 million (S$55 million) from Binance, the company said on Wednesday, in the latest in a string of thefts from cryptocurrency exchanges around the world.

(REUTERS) - In just a single transaction, hackers have stolen US$41 million (S$55 million) in bitcoins from one of the world's largest cryptocurrency exchanges.

Binance confirmed the news in a post on its website on Wednesday (May 8).

The 7,000 bitcoins were withdrawn, it said, by hackers using a variety of techniques - including "phishing, viruses and other attacks".

It is the latest in a string of thefts from cryptocurrency exchanges around the world.

"It really underscores that theft from hacks is still a big problem," said Mr Tom Wilso, Reuters cryptocurrency correspondent. "Researchers in the US said that in the first month of this year there was about US$1.2 billion worth of cryptocurrencies lost in hacks and fraud. That's slowed slightly from last year but it really goes to show that exchanges are still very vulnerable from cyber criminals."

Binance said user funds wouldn't be affected because the company would use its secure asset fund to cover the loss.

Bitcoin's price dropped by as much as 4.2 per cent in early Asian trading, as news of the hack broke, although it later recovered some ground.

Binance said all deposits and withdrawals from the exchange will remain suspended while the company investigates.