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Kronos Research halts trading following API key hack

on Nov 20, 2023
  • Kronos Research announced it was halting trading on November 19.
  • The quantitative trading platform's decision to pause trading followed a $26 million hack incident.
  • Blockchain data shows a hacker stole 12,800 ETH after compromising the platform's API keys.

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Crypto trading and market making platform Kronos Research announced on November 19 that it had paused all trading activity after a hack incident involving compromised API keys.

The crypto platform said halting trading was “in the interest of transparency” amid an investigation around the unauthorised access.

Kronos halts trading after $26 million hack

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While there had been losses, Kronos initially limited this to a small portion of its equity. However, they later acknowledged a sizable loss of $26 million, reassuring the community that the quantitative trading firm “remains in good standing.” 

The platform, which plans to resume operations as soon as possible, confirmed that all losses resulting from the incident will be covered internally.

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“We’re prioritizing our resources to resume servicing the exchanges and token projects we provide liquidity for. This is the first time since 2018 we’ve halted trading, and we are confident we will bounce back stronger than ever,” the team said in an update on X.

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According to blockchain sleuth ZachXBT, the hacker had drained the stolen funds via six crypto wallets, with a total of over 12,800 ETH.

The Kronos hack adds to the series of API key breaches witnessed in the crypto space. Recent attacks have led to losses at crypto exchange Poloniex, as well as Telegram bots Unibot and Mastro. As reported, Maestro refunded users after a hacker stole 610 ETH earlier this month.

These thefts happen as the crypto industry continues to grapple with increased hack incidents. A report by blockchain security platform Certik revealed that the crypto industry had lost over $700 million worth of crypto assets to hackers in the third quarter of 2023.

The amount of digital assets stolen in the quarter was nearly double that recorded in both Q1 and Q2 that had $320 million and $313 million respectively.


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