Crypto slumps; asian crypto exchanges closed and hacked

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The crypto market had a setback on Friday in Asia, with major cryptocurrencies recording double-digit losses.

Bitcoin plunged 14.24% to $11,346 by 10:34 AM ET (02:34 GMT), giving up the gains it made this week. The coin hit an 18-month high of $13,666.02 the day before, soaring more than 260% this year but then began to lose its steam.

Prices of other major currencies also slumped. Ethereum lost 12.06%, XRP fell 12.17% and Litecoin dropped 11.99%.

News from Asia today did not excite the crypto traders at all. Indian crypto exchange Koinex shut down immediately, and Singapore crypto exchange Bitrue was hacked for over $4 million in assets.

India-based Koinex decided to shut down all of its digital assets exchange services and operations. Its co-founder Rahul Raj said it was due to the Indian government delaying clarifying crypto regulation.

“The last 14 months have been tough to operate a digital assets trading business in India, on account of the closure of bank accounts holding user deposits,” he said. Koinex was said to be denied payment services from payment gateways and banks.

India is not welcoming cryptocurrencies. The country proposed to introduce a 10-year jail sentence for Indian citizens who use cryptocurrencies this month.

“The final decision has been taken after duly considering all the latest developments in the crypto and blockchain industry in India… Unfortunately we’re not too hopeful that things will change for the better in the near future,” he added.

Koinex’s Singaporean peer Bitrue did not deliver good news either, as it lost over $4 million in XRP and Cardano tokens in a hack.

Bitrue said a hacker accessed the exchange’s “hot wallet” and moved $4.04 million XRP and 235,000 Cardano tokens to different exchanges. The hack affected 90 Bitrue users.

The crypto exchange said the situation is “under control”, and that all the lost funds will be returned to users. “We are reviewing our security measures and policies to ensure this does not happen again,” it added.

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