Mt. Gox rediscovers 200,000 Bitcoin

Some cryptocurrency believed to have been stolen by hackers has been discovered -- in an old wallet thought to be empty.
Written by Charlie Osborne, Contributing Writer

Bitcoin trading post Mt. Gox has discovered 200,000 Bitcoin once missing in action -- in an old wallet no longer in use.

In an announcement on its website (.PDF), the once-dominant Bitcoin exchange said this discovery lowers the amount of missing Bitcoin form 850,000 to 650,000. Within the release, Mt. Gox CEO Mark Karpeles said:

"Mt. Gox had certain old format wallets which were used in the past and which, Mt. Gox thought, no longer held any Bitcoins.

These wallets were rescanded and their balance researched. On March 7, Mt. Gox confirmed that an old format wallet which was used prior to June 2011 held a balance of approximately 200,000 BTC."

Bitcoin held by Mt. Gox now amounts to roughly 202,000 BTC, all of which have been removed to offline storage and reported to attorneys due to the current bankruptcy case and investigation.

Originally, it was believed that 750,000 BTC belonging to customers and 100,000 BTC belonging to the firm were stolen -- worth roughly $495 million in today's trading. However, taking into account the recovered digital currency, this figure has been revised to 650,000 BTC.

Tokyo-based Mt. Gox was once the most popular and largest trading post for the exchange of the digital currency. However, last month the firm abruptly closed its doors without warning, later revealing that cyberattacks taking place over a number of years had systematically wiped out both customer and Mt. Gox-owned Bitcoin -- causing the firm to file for bankruptcy.

The Bitcoin community, cut off from their investments and unsure of whether their Bitcoin was recoverable, flew into a rage. A number of hackers defaced the chief executive's blog and Reddit account, and others released data that allegedly showed that "stolen" Bitcoin was actually due to company fraud.

In response, Mt. Gox said the stolen Bitcoin was lifted due to "system flaws," and apologized. Although customers are still unable to withdraw Bitcoin, they are now able to log in to their accounts and check their balances.

Mt. Gox is not the only Bitcoin exchange to be hit by cyberattacks. Following the Mt. Gox debacle, Flexcoin was forced to close its doors after losing 896 Bitcoin, worth approximately $606,000. Flexcoin said it neither had the resources or cash to carry on its services.

Another Bitcoin exchange, Poloniex, also admitted to losing over 10 percent of customer Bitcoin stored online.

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