A small and relatively unknown Bitcoin exchange has been hacked. Making this announcement on their official Twitter page, the Alberta-based firm said that the exchange has been hacked by someone and all its funds have been manipulated against the exchange. The total loss due to the hack is estimated at 913 Bitcoin (BTC).
The exchange claims that it has lost everything with no funds in store. As a result, it was closing down all operations and services, including their social media accounts.
MapleChange hopes to be able to refund its users only after the investigations are over.
Experts, consumers and industry leaders like Changpeng Zhao, Joseph Young, and BitLord, seem to be skeptical about this unexpected occurrence. Most of them see this as an exit scam.
Crypto-centric journalist and analyst, Joseph Young in his tweet asked investors to be judicious while choosing small exchanges as most of the small exchanges usually focus on maximizing profits rather than security or investor protection.
Similarly, Changpeng Zhao, CEO of Binance also urged consumers to avoid exchanges that don’t have access to cold wallets at all costs. A lack of proper storage solutions indicates the platform’s intent and goals, he believes.
There are many factors which can be considered while deciding whether it is a real hack or an exit scam.
In general, if a platform is hacked, they do not have to delete the social media accounts or disappear from the earth. When such things happen, the owners of the exchange or platform should inform the community about the problems that it has encountered.
In the case of MapleChange, the short span of time between the announcement of the ‘bug’ and the total disappearance of the exchange or its operators like social media accounts is indicative of the exit scam.
With the aim to provide information about the exchange and to bring those responsible to justice, a Twitter account known as @MapleChanged has been created.
The domain itself, registered at GoDaddy by one “Flavius P,” raises suspicion. Most professional operations take extra efforts to be above board, especially those handling other people’s funds. Most of the data regarding the platform, specifically the domain registry information have been now found to be fake.
Interestingly, @MapleChanged has found that the CEO of the ‘hacked’ exchange was in partnership with ETZmine.com, a mining pool, Weycoin (WAE), a cryptocurrency project. However, their involvement in this apparent ‘scam’ is yet to be confirmed.
MapleChange.com’s recent traffic statistics show that they were most probably doing more business over the last week than what they had been doing in recent times. Presently, there is no additional information on the issue and whether it will be possible to recover the lost funds.