The South Korean cryptocurrency exchange Upbit has reported that it was hit by hackers who made off with 342,000 Ethereum, approximately $48.7 million. The hackers targeted Upbit’s Ethereum “hot wallet.” Hot wallets are software-based storage solutions for crypto-currency, which are typically applications on phones or computers. Upbit has since moved all of their crypto-currencies to cold wallets, using hardware-based storage for safekeeping. All transactions through Upbit are currently suspended and are expected to remain so for the next two weeks.
Over the past several years South Korean cryptocurrency exchanges have been a favored target of North Korea, who has been starved for revenue. It is currently unknown who is responsible for the attack on Upbit or where the funds will ultimately be deposited, but it is possible that this was yet another North Korean operation against a financial institution. More details on this attack can be found at https://thenextweb.com/hardfork/2019/11/27/ethereum-upbit-cryptocurrency-exchange-hackers-stolen-million-hot-wallet/