BitMEX — the most popular cryptocurrency margin trading exchange — was recently breached, exposing as many as 400,000 customer email addresses.
A new Twitter account, operating under the name of Bitmexdatabaseleak, was set up and appeared to be gradually leaking the registration email of several prominent BitMEX users. So far, the emails and user IDs of several BitMEX employees have been leaked, in addition to a handful of prominent traders.
Besides the customer database being compromised, the official BitMEX Twitter account was also temporarily compromised — with the account being used to tweet out two messages that were promptly deleted. The first simply read “Hacked” before being followed up with a tweet warning BitMEX users to “Take your BTC and run. Last day for withdrawals.” The tweets were allegedly posted by a disgruntled former BitMEX employee that was fired as a result of the email leak.
BitMEX provided an official update confirming the breach and confirmed that the data leak was confined to just customer email addresses — no funds or other private data was lost.
Nonetheless, according to recent estimates, there were at least 30,000 emails contained in the leak — with the vast majority of these being Gmail addresses.
I now have access to about 3,000 unique emails from the BitMEX leak.
– from what I can tell, there is more than 30,000 unique emails in total
– 67% emails (from my sample size) use gmail, 7% hotmail, 4% yahoo, 3% protonmail
— Larry Cermak (@lawmaster) November 1, 2019
Fuel was also added to the fire after @TheCrypt0Mask on Twitter ran the BitMEX email dump against a database of cleartext passwords and found a total of 229 matching combinations.
So i ran a quick search on the bitmex emails on 1 of my databases and ive gotten quite a few hits( cleartext passwords)
Do you guys think i should email the ppl i found passwords for?
— TheMask (@TheCrypt0Mask) November 1, 2019
Fortunately, @TheCrypt0Mask warned all the affected individuals by email — but there is still a good chance that a malicious actor could have breached some of these accounts.
Best BitMEX Alternatives
For a platform supposedly committed to protecting the privacy of its users, the recent misstep has come as a shock to the platform’s users. Understandably, many of those affected — and even those that were not directly affected — are now looking for a more secure alternative to BitMEX.
Fortunately, though BitMEX is arguably the most popular cryptocurrency margin trading platform, there are several prominent alternatives that offer much of the same functionality. Among the platforms that best match BitMEX in terms of functionality, StormGain and ByBit may be the best alternatives for those looking to move away from BitMEX.
In terms of leverage, both StormGain and ByBit offer up to 100x leverage — allowing traders to open positions with as much as 100x of the initial margin.
Both platforms also feature a much simpler user interface, making them far more approachable to newer traders than BitMEX, though this does come at the cost of reduced functionality.
Beyond this, both StormGain and ByBit have several features that make them excellent options in their own right. For example, StormGain is currently offering 10% interest on all deposits over $100 and has extremely useful sentiment indicators that make margin trading a much safer endeavor.
ByBit, on the other hand, is one of the only exchanges to offer perpetual swaps for several different digital assets — including Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH) and EOS — making it an excellent choice for traders that prefer to trade altcoin markets.
Images are courtesy of Twitter, Shutterstock.
Full Disclosure: StormGain is an exchange partner of BeInCrypto.