Bitcoin Gold (BTG) Will Be Delisted From Bittrex Following 51 Percent Attack
Bitcoin Gold’s time on Bittrex is over, but the cryptocurrency seems not to be too bothered about it.
The US-based cryptocurrency exchange has delisted BTG after the crypto’s team refused to pay 12,372 BTG or $265,000 as compensation to the exchange.
The exchange demanded that Bitcoin Gold pay for their role in the 51% attack that led to the loss of more than 388,000 BTG in May.
The attack saw hackers steal coins worth nearly $18 million from several exchanges. Some of the platforms that lost money include Binance, HitBTC, Bitfinex, Bithumb, and Bittrex.
In May, hackers used rented hash power from mining company NiceHash miners and used it to attack Bitcoin Gold. The attackers amassed over 51 percent of the network’s hash power before launching the attack using a method called “double spending”.
The attackers deposited 12,371 BTG on the Bittrex exchange before proceeding to double-spend them. The Exchange believes that it was Bitcoin Gold’s fault that led to the withdrawal of coins whose worth the exchange has not disclosed.
The BTG team released a statement, disclosing that Bittrex asked for 12,372 BTG as compensation, and to show that the coin had taken responsibility for what happened on the blockchain.
However, the BTG team refused to honor that request. It prompted the Seattle-based trading platform to issue an ultimatum: the cryptocurrency had to pay 6,000 BTG or else face delisting from the exchange.
“They later informed us they would cover part of the loss from their own BTG reserves and requested we pay the remaining ~6,000 BTG, and that if we did not, we would be delisted.”
According to Bitcoin Gold’s statement, the requirement to pay the stated amount was something the team could not implement.
The BTG board proposed a loan from the endowment fund, but Bittrex rejected that offer. It insisted on getting the payment, something the cryptocurrency decided against due to the impact it would have on the coin’s community.
It concluded that it had no power to make any such disbursement, especially as it would be going to a private company to cover “losses from their own security failures.”
Furthermore, funds in the Endowment kit are meant for supporting long-term projects on the platform. Using the funds to pay Bittrex would have gone against the BTG roadmap and whitepaper.
Bitcoin Gold’s damage control
Bitcoin Gold developers have maintained that they did everything that needed to be done during and after the attack.
Part of its responsibility, the BTG team said, included handing over the hackers’ wallet address to Bittrex. It also provided the necessary advice as well as sounded warnings- which it felt was enough.
Their statement says:
“We feel it’s clear that we took every reasonable step to try to help ensure Bittrex’s safety against this threat.”
As a non-profit, the Bitcoin Gold team took issue with Bittrex’ demand and concludes that it is not responsible for the security of private exchanges.
It stated that as a private business that earns revenue, Bittrex has to accept that there are risks and that it should take responsibility for its own security.
Acknowledging that Bittrex has indeed de-listed it, the BTG team has moved to assure the other exchange partners that the team will continue to work for a more secure and safer network.
Several exchanges have indeed re-opened BTG wallets after the successful Network Upgrade earlier in July.
Bitcoin Gold may not suffer any big impacts from the delisting as Bittrex contributed a tiny fraction of the coin’s liquidity. However, the general sentiment around took a hit after the attack.
Its value has since tanked, and it will take some effort to have the coin rally back to pre-51% attack levels.
BTG has lost over 70 percent of its value since and currently trades at $21 against the US dollar. It has a market cap of $371 million and ranks 29th on XBT.net.