Mt Gox users can now check bitcoin balances on closed exchange

Mt Gox users can now check bitcoin balances on closed exchange

Summary: A little relief has been offered to Mt Gox to users who can check what their wallets hold - they just won't be able to make withdrawals from them.

TOPICS: Security

Shuttered bitcoin exchange MtGox, which is currently seeking bankruptcy shelter, on Tuesday offered a modicum of relief to users by allowing them to check their balances. The rub is they can't do much more than that.

Anyone unlucky enough to have a Bitcoin wallet at MtGox can now log in to see their account, if only to confirm what could be available to them should the company manage to sort its affairs out.

"Please be aware that confirming the balance on this site does not constitute a filing of rehabilitation claims under the civil rehabilitation procedure and note that the balance amounts shown on this site should also not be considered an acknowledgement by MtGox Co, Ltd of the amount of any rehabilitation claims of users," MtGox says on its website.

"Rehabilitation claims under a civil rehabilitation procedure become confirmed from a filing which is followed by an investigation procedure. The method for filing claims will be published on this site as soon as we will be in situation to announce it."

The reference to rehabilitation claims comes from a Japanese court order it gained on February 28, which prevented it from paying out creditors.

The bankruptcy claim there and in the US came just weeks after the emergence of denial of service attacks on bitcoin wallets that exploited a "transaction malleability issue" to tamper with confirmation details that are used in an exchange between bitcoin wallets.

In early February both MtGox and its main rival, Bitstamp, temporarily suspended withdrawals due to attacks linked to the bug. The Bitcoin Foundation said that the problem affecting wallets could result in bitcoins being tied up in unconfirmed transactions, but not in stolen bitcoin.

Tuesday was the first time MtGox users have had any form of access to their wallets since its closure on 25 February, a day after it resigned from its position on the Bitcoin Foundation board.

MtGox users had already been prevented from initiating withdrawals for several weeks before the company revealed in its bankruptcy filing that some 850,000 bitcoins under its management had vanished due to a software bug "in the bitcoin system".

The Bitcoin Foundation has insisted the issues Mt Gox was experiencing were due to its implementation of the bitcoin wallet, as opposed a bug in bitcoin itself.

Read more on Bitcoin

Topic: Security

Liam Tung

About Liam Tung

Liam Tung is an Australian business technology journalist living a few too many Swedish miles north of Stockholm for his liking. He gained a bachelors degree in economics and arts (cultural studies) at Sydney's Macquarie University, but hacked (without Norse or malicious code for that matter) his way into a career as an enterprise tech, security and telecommunications journalist with ZDNet Australia. These days Liam is a full time freelance technology journalist who writes for several publications.

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  • Users may never get those Bitcoins back

    It appears that they are now under the jurisdiction of a Japanese bankruptcy court and if the rules in Japan are anything like those in the US, the users won't have any greater claim on Mt. Gox' assets than will any other creditor.
    John L. Ries
  • ALSO

    Note all of the coverage over the last couple of days: There is an archive file that you can download from various places that contains a valid database of what accounts at Mt. Gox held. HOWEVER, included in that archive is a Win/Mac executable trojan that APPEARS to log you in so you can check balances, but in actuality attempts to steal yours.

    As of this morning, that trojan was only detected by about half of the anti-malware tools.
  • The best thing about MtGox?

    no bail-outs.

    Let the bad business practice employed there die.

    And remember, it's called a wallet for a reason. If you don't store it in your own pocket you can't really scream too loud if it goes missing.
    • Fair enough

      If caveat emptor is the way one thinks all business should be done (no guarantees and no recourse), then this is par for the course. And those who think otherwise get to more accurately assess the risks of using Bitcoin.
      John L. Ries
  • Hmmm...

    So they will let you "see" the Bitcoins that are in your "Wallet"...which may, or may not, actually be IN your "wallet"...and may, or may not actually exist...because 750,000 of them are "missing".

    Once again...another classic P.T. Barnum moment.
  • Big suprise...

    ...from a currency that has the full faith and credit of... nobody.
  • Asian English Wannabe Copy Editors

    LOL, another flub for copywriters who don't know English and another gottcha for all these bloggers who don't copy edit/proof read their own wit

    "what could be available them should the company manage to sort its affairs out"

    Available TO correct, wth did the word TO go?

    Come on ZDNET....hire some REAL english speaking transcribers!