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Hacked AscendEX to Reimburse Users, Says ‘Relatively Small Percentage’ Impacted

Ruholamin Haqshanas
Last updated: | 2 min read
Source: AdobeStock / Vitalii Vodolazskyi


Crypto trading platform AscendEX, formerly known as BitMax, which was hacked for an estimated USD 78m worth of digital assets on Saturday, intends to “100%” reimburse all the affected users. 

Updating users on the incident, the AscendEX team said that hackers compromised one of the exchange’s hot wallets, which allowed them to access and transfer digital assets hosted over the Ethereum (ETH), Binance Smart Chain (BSC), and Polygon (MATIC) blockchains.

AscendEX insisted that cold wallets are unaffected and that the impacted assets constitute “a relatively small percentage of total exchange assets.” 

Detailing its approach to the matter, the exchange said it will first “compensate all users affected 100%.”

“Second, collaborate with blockchain forensic firms and law enforcement,” AscendEX said, adding they are working with crypto analysis firms to monitor the transferred assets.

“We are also in close contact with other CEXs [centralized exchanges] to blacklist wallets associated with the incident,” the exchange said, sharing the wallet addresses that stolen assets were transferred to.

According to the blockchain security and data analytics firm PeckShield, the total estimated loss is USD 77.7m, with the majority (around USD 60m) stolen from the assets hosted on the Ethereum blockchain.

Data from PeckShield reveals that the stolen tokens include large chunks of stablecoins (USDT and USDC), some of the less well-known tokens like taraxa (TARA), as well as smaller sums of other digital assets like shiba inu (SHIB), AAVE, and compound (COMP).

As of now, AscendEX’s deposit and withdrawal services are frozen, but the team noted that they are working to restore them within the next couple of days. “Following a thorough security review, we intend to reopen the platform and allow all users to freely transfer assets,” the team said.

AscendEX has a 24-hour trading volume of around USD 104m, down from USD 190m on December 7, according to CoinGecko. The exchange is now at the 35th place by daily trading volume.

Notably, the hack comes just one week after crypto exchange BitMart was hacked for approximately USD 200m worth of digital assets. Bitmart also pledged to compensate affected users.


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