Glitch sees users pinch $3M in bitcoin from crypto exchange Coinberry

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Toronto crypto exchange Coinberry says a software glitch temporarily allowed over 500 users to take 120 bitcoin, worth $3 million.

In a lawsuit filed in June, the WonderFi Technologies-backed firm owned by Shark Tank star Kevin O’Leary says it still hasn’t recovered two-thirds of the stolen bitcoin. A software upgrade in 2020 accidentally let users purchase bitcoin in Canadian dollars that didn’t exist in their accounts.

Coinberry says users could start an Interac e-transfer, have the money show up on their accounts, buy bitcoin, transfer out the tokens, then cancel the original e-transfer — all without losing any real Canadian dollars.

The issue was fixed, but not before over 500 of its customers had caught on and cashed in. After making contact with customers, it recovered about 37 bitcoin from 270 users. As Financial Post points out, 83 bitcoin are still floating around in the hands of tricksy customers.

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However, the lawsuit only names 50 users who stole 63 bitcoin, leaving 20 BTC and over 200 users out of the filing. Coinberry states that most customers took advantage of the glitch in amounts under $5,000 (valued May 2020), and is only going after big fish.

“Coinberry contacted all of the said 546 affected registered users by email and demanded return of the misappropriated bitcoins,” the lawsuit claims. “Coinberry also immediately contacted Binance.”

“Binance acknowledged that it had identified a quantity of the misappropriated BTC and undertook to restrict any access to the accounts.” 

The largest offenders are two people, Jordan Steifuk and Connor Heffernan, who Coinberry says are the same person. They allegedly stole $385,722.31 (valued April 2022).

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