Bitcoin mining marketplace NiceHash loses tens of millions of dollars following hack

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In all, it is a devastating hack that is another in a series of high profile crypto currency heists that have traditionally left users out money and the company destroyed.

NiceHash, a marketplace for cloud-based mining of cryptocurrencies, made its announcement following an hours-long outage attributed to "maintenance" and reports from NiceHash users that their wallets had been emptied. The amounts mined are held in trust by NiceHash with the company naturally taking its own cut of the transaction with users then being able to transfer bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies earned via the service to their own wallets. "We are now investigating the nature of the incident and, as a result, we are stopping all operations for the next 24 hours", the marketplace said in a statement late on Wednesday. The company said Thursday in a statement posted on its website that it had stopped operations and was working to verify how many bitcoins were taken.

The kicker comes in the next paragraph, where they write that "importantly, our payment system was compromised and the contents of the NiceHash Bitcoin wallet have been stolen". Bitcoin reached 12,000 dollars per Bitcoin today.

"In addition to undertaking our own investigation, the incident has been reported to the relevant authorities and law enforcement and we are cooperating with them as a matter of urgency", it said.

CoinDesk, a site specializing in cryptocurrency news and data, reported that NiceHash users were circulating a link to a bitcoin account that suggested as many as 4,736 bitcoins had been stolen, an amount worth roughly $67 million at current prices. On Jan. 1 this year, bitcoin was priced at just under $1,000. We will endeavor to update you at regular intervals.

NiceHash advised users to change online passwords, saying it was still trying to understand what had happened during the incident.

We are truly sorry for any inconvenience that this may have caused and are committing every resource towards solving this issue as soon as possible.