Getting robbed in a street or scammed over a fake ATM is scary, but waking up in the morning and seeing your assets vanished from your digital wallet is a different kind of nightmare.
With the rise of crypto-enthusiasts, hackers are also quick with their attempts to conquer the cryptocurrency world by cracking the system and stealing some money.
Cryptocurrencies represent the future of the financial world –– we can now exchange money without intermediaries in a matter of seconds. However, as the governments try to come up with plans to regulate the transactions of crypto-assets, cybercriminals look for ways to exploit every opportunity of anonymous and decentralized blockchain technology.
In an exclusive comment to DailyCoin, a security spokesperson from Binance – the largest cryptocurrency exchange platform in the world – shared the measures they take to prevent cybersecurity threats:
“Binance have transaction monitoring tools and work closely with top chain analytics teams such as Elliptic, TRM Labs, Ciphertrace. We also have an in-house investigation team and work with the whole crypto investigator community sharing and iterating on indicators of compromise for current cases. We have a security data science team that applies data science techniques to investigations and compliance processes as well as building our own in-house AML detection system,”
commented a spokesperson, who asked to keep their identity private.
Binance is specifically focused on detecting accounts receiving money laundering flows associated with ransomware and other cyber attacks, as well as detecting and identifying nested services/exchangers which are oftentimes the receivers of cyber attack money.
Similarly, Coinbase – a widely used cryptocurrency trading platform works with industry partners to analyze blockchain in parallel with tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTPs) of the attackers. Matt Muller, the Head of Security Operations from Coinbase wrote,
“Sharing intelligence and analysis quickly is the most effective manner of disrupting unauthorized use of crypto exchanges and protecting our collective community of customers,”
Paul Sibenik, an expert blockchain forensics investigator from CipherBlade –– a blockchain investigation agency that has tracked suspects in numerous cybercrime cases –– told DailyCoin that the major cyber threats in the cryptocurrency industry include exchange account hacks, hacks/thefts from personal wallets, ransomware, scams, fraud, embezzlement, exit scams, ransomware, and data breaches.
“CipherBlade investigates and provides intelligence on these types of matters. It typically (but not always) ends up getting reported to law enforcement so appropriate action can be taken, thereby somewhat mitigating the impact on cybercrime in the industry. Another core thing we really try to do is to focus on education, particularly with regards to security, fraud prevention, and OPSEC. Prevention is the best medicine, and all too often both individuals and companies don't have adequate security measures in place, which can lead to significant financial loss,”
Sibenik also commented on keeping your digital money safe in various cryptocurrency trading platforms:
“If it's a legitimate and reputable exchange, then storing your assets there for a short period of time is perfectly fine so long as you've taken appropriate measures to secure your account properly. Ultimately, however, you shouldn't be storing cryptocurrency assets on exchanges for more than brief periods of time; it should be held in personal wallets (ideally hardware wallets if there's a significant portion of crypto involved)”.
According to a security expert from Binance, cryptocurrencies are a godsend for criminals and are more widely targeted because of their decentralized nature. Transactions cannot be reversed once your crypto is stolen. Ransomware attacks have increased drastically with no signs of slowing down in addition to exchange hacks as well as user-targeted phishing.
“What we are doing is building a strong organized defense between public and private sector companies in order to combat these new financially motivated adversaries,”
a spokesperson from Binance shared.
Sibenik added to that, saying that cryptocurrency is popular with cybercriminals because of its inherent properties: it’s digital, fast, irreversible, borderless, self-custodial, and pseudonymous.
“Many scammers focus exclusively on cryptocurrency now. Ransomware attackers primarily want payment in cryptocurrency. Cryptocurrency has many features in common with cash, albeit in digital form,”
Cybercrime is a common threat in the crypto industry. To ensure safety on crypto exchange platforms, complete the security steps fully to protect your account and digital wallet.