Bitmain Sues Mystery Bitcoin Thief Who Hacked Its Binance Account
Bitcoin mining giant Bitmain has filed a lawsuit against a mystery hacker who allegedly stole bitcoin from one of the firm’s cryptocurrency exchange accounts.
According to the suit, which the China-based Bitmain filed on Nov. 7 in the US District Court for the Western District of Washington, the unknown hacker infiltrated Bitmain’s Binance account in April and stole funds from the firm. However, perhaps to better conceal their identity, the hacker did not just attempt to withdraw Bitmain’s funds to their own bitcoin wallet. Rather, they used the bitcoin to artificially inflate the price of small-cap cryptocurrency MANA, the native ERC-20 token of virtual reality platform Decentraland. Spurred by the irregular trades, the MANA price rocketed from $0.12 to $0.34 on Binance in the span of less than an hour. Even more remarkable, the global MANA price rose to $0.20 — a gain of 40 percent — meaning that a hack involving a single cryptocurrency exchange account single-handedly raised the nominal value of the MANA cryptocurrency’s market cap by more than $80 million.Presumably, this allowed the hacker to sell MANA they were already holding at inflated prices, and, significantly, they could potentially have liquidated the funds on one or more separate crypto exchanges since the Bitmain pump disrupted the worldwide MANA market.