Cyberattack Hits Turkish Exchange BtcTurk: Details


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Turkish cryptocurrency exchange BtcTurk has reported a cyberattack that affected the digital assets stored in ten of its hot wallets. This breach follows reports of suspicious transfers involving Avalanche tokens on Saturday. While BtcTurk has assured its users that the majority of its assets, stored in cold wallets, remain secure, the incident raises significant security concerns within the crypto community.

BtcTurk Faces Exploit

BtcTurk’s announcement highlighted that despite the breach, the company remains solvent. The exchange has taken immediate steps to mitigate the impact of the attack and is working closely with Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, to investigate the incident. Binance CEO Richard Teng confirmed on social media platform X that Binance has already frozen over $5.3 million in stolen funds as part of the collaborative effort.

ZachXBT Provides Further Insight

Blockchain investigator ZachXBT provided further insights into the attack, suggesting that approximately $54 million in Avalanche tokens were transferred during the breach.

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According to ZachXBT, these tokens were funneled through exchanges such as Binance and Coinbase using the decentralized exchange protocol THORChain. The tokens were then converted to Bitcoin and withdrawn to two separate wallets in a series of large transactions coinciding with BtcTurk’s announcement of the breach.

Adding credibility to the connection between BtcTurk and the suspicious Avalanche transfers, a blockchain researcher had previously identified the implicated Avalanche wallet as belonging to a Turkish cryptocurrency exchange. This link reinforces the hypothesis that BtcTurk was the target of the attack.

Major Threat Actor Behind Sportsbet

ZachXBT also revealed that the same threat actor might have been involved in a separate attack on online casino Sportsbet just hours before the BtcTurk incident. He noted that more than $3.5 million was likely stolen from Sportsbet, with the stolen funds being intermingled with those from the BtcTurk heist. 

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A message on the Sportsbet homepage indicates ongoing maintenance affecting transactions on BTC and BSC networks, hinting at potential disruptions caused by the security breach.

The cyberattack on BtcTurk underscores the persistent vulnerabilities in the cryptocurrency space, even among established exchanges. Despite robust security measures, hot wallets remain a target for sophisticated hackers. The involvement of prominent exchanges like Binance in the investigation highlights the collaborative efforts within the crypto community to address such threats and recover stolen assets.

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