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Topbitcoin.lv Bad Code Has Lost $500 Million of Cryptocurrency in Under a Year

Cryptocurrency can be lost in a variety of ways, from hacking to forgotten passwords and failed flash drives. But in dollar terms, one of the biggest causes of crypto losses is bad code, and its not usually the fault of the coins developers. Instead, third parties, including shoddy smart contract developers and shady exchanges, are to blame for losses that have reached half a billion dollars in the last seven months. Also read:Cryptocurrency Mining Demand Exceeded the Expectations of Nvidia in Q4

Bitgrail Gets Railed for Dodgy Code

Last week,

news.Bitcoin.comreported

on the demise of Bitgrail, which contrived to lose $170 million of nano cryptocurrency. While the precise sequence of events that caused the catastrophic collapse of the exchange with the assets of thousands of customers is still being confirmed, poor code is being blamed. As reported at the time:

There are rumors that Bitgrail became insolvent following a withdrawal bug that was discovered by some users and then shared in Discord and other chat groups, causing the wallet balance to gradually diminish. One user explained: There was a bug on Bitgrail where if you placed two orders you got double balance added to your account. You could then withdraw while the orders were up and steal the coins. You had negative balance in the end but you could just make a new account.

In the aftermath of the incident, this theory has been bolstered by

allegations

that a bug was indeed responsible, and not in nanos code, but in Bitgrails. One source asserted: There was a bug, on the withdraw page. But this check was only on java-script client side, you find the js which is sending the request, then you inspect element console, and run the java-script manually, to send a request for withdrawal of a higher amount than in your balance. Bitgrail delivered this withdrawal. How many people did this? Who knows.

There was another bug, you could request a withdrawal to your address from another user-id, from another user-account. That would cause the other users balance to have missing funds or negative balance. Bitgrail bomber solved this bug by manually entering the correct numbers in his database. This is what you get for using a PHP website coded by same skill-level as CfB of IDIOTA.

Even the Best Cryptocurrencies Arent Immune to Poor Code

The cryptocurrency most commonly associated with catastrophic bugs is ethereum. Thats not due to its underlying code, but on account of the smart contracts that can be built on top of the ethereum framework. First there was the DAO, which led to ethereum being forked right out the gate, and then there was the Parity bug that caused 150,000 ETH to be stolen, followed by the

other Parity bug

that caused $168 million of ETH to be locked up. In the past couple of weeks, ethereum bugs have surfaced once more, albeit on a smaller scale. Proof of Weak Hands (PoWH) was a joke scamcoin which turned into an actual scamcoin after a bug

led to the loss of 900 ether

worth $1 million that had been sent to the contract address. The developer then disappeared after receiving death threats from investors aggrieved to discover that the joke Ponzi they were buying into was even less legitimate than it had seemed.

After a smart contract bug led to the loss of 900 ETH, the PoWH website looked like this in the days afterwards

PoWH has since spawned a new scamcoin called

ethpyramid

which is for strong hands only. To the question Is Ethpyramid secure? the site responds Yes. Our dev team put a lot of time into refining and testing this contract to make sure your tokens are safe. Internal functions of the contract are not accessible to the end user. Theres also

PoWH420

, the worlds dank autonomous and self-sustaining 420 pyramid scheme.

PoWH 420

Even if joke coins and their joke developers are taken out of the equation, its evident that cryptocurrencies are only as strong as their weakest link. While altcoins such as ethereum and nano have undoubted potential, like every other crypto theyre hostage to bugs lurking in wallets, smart contracts, and exchanges. One bad line of code is all it takes.

Do you think Bitgrail was brought down by a withdrawal bug or is there more to this story? Let us know in the comments section below. Images courtesy of Shutterstock, and PoWH420. Katie Webster assisted with this article.

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