The rising value of bitcoin has led to increased scrutiny of the security of cryptocurrency, which offers more secure trading using blockchain. But how secure is blockchain trading? Already in 2018, there have been reports of an armed robbery where a cryptocurrency trader was forced to transfer cryptocurrency at gunpoint and cybercriminals using YouTube ads to take control of users’ computers in order to mine cryptocurrency. So how safe is your digital currency and if it is stolen, can you get it back?
IEEE senior member and cybersecurity expert, Kevin Curran, believes that never in the history of humanity has a value of currency been so easy to lose.
Kevin Curran, Senior Member and Cybersecurity at IEEE:
“Unlike traditional banking mechanisms, blockchain currencies can be stolen and moved to thieves accounts with no means of recovery. Nothing can bring it back. This is a real and ever-present danger with cryptocurrencies and there have been ever-increasing incidents of coins being stolen, as seen in the last few weeks. Due to their value, hackers are of course seeking out cryptocurrencies. If they do find your cryptocurrency wallet or hack online crypto exchanges and transfer the coins – then it is basically gone forever. It is not that we cannot see which ‘wallet’ these ‘coins’ have been transferred into but rather that the stolen tokens can be transformed into ‘fresh’ tokens by using ‘mixing services’, which create new untraceable tokens. Ultimately, remember that the European Banking Authority and others have warned that bitcoin users are not protected by refund rights or chargebacks.
Because of this, many people believe the risks outweigh the benefits. Buying, selling and storing of bitcoin is beyond what we can reasonably expect the public to understand but as with most technologies, it is expected cryptocurrency will become more user friendly over time.”