Usually, rumours about a hack or a breach have a negative impact on an exchange, or a specific cryptocurrency. In this case, though, the digital asset and the platform in question has managed to endure such talk and still show an increase in price.
Amid rumors about a person having in its power details of more than 10,000 KYC documents that are, allegedly, very similar to those of Binance, the exchange’s associated token, Binance Coin (BNB) experienced a marked increase of 11% in the last day, on Thursday, August 8th.
The day was relatively quiet for the rest of the cryptocurrencies, with Bitcoin going up 2%. Binance Coin’s price swing came despite the alleged FUD (fear, uncertainty, and doubt) campaign that the platform has been enduring in the last few hours.
BNB’s market cap reached $4.76 billion after Thursday’s developments, and the 11% increase trumped every other digital asset in the top 50, according to data from CoinMarketCap.
True or False?
To this day, it is still not clear whether the criminal has the KYC documents or not. The hacker, allegedly, obtained personal data from several thousand customers of the platform, something that Binance denied shortly after. After that, the cybercriminal used a Telegram group to distribute the material.
In an industry that relies so much on reputation and preaching the importance of data security, it is somewhat surprising that Binance Coin experienced such a positive price swing in the last few hours after the alleged data hack.
“Don’t Fall into the KYC Leak FUD”
According to Binance’s CEO, Changpeng Zhao (known around the industry as CZ) went to his official Twitter account to deny the claims. He wrote “Don’t fall into the “KYC leak” FUD. We are investigating, will update shortly” in his account @cz_binance.
Then, Binance went on to publish another statement: “An unidentified individual has threatened and harassed us, demanding 300 BTC in exchange for withholding 10,000 photos that bear similarity to Binance KYC data. We are still investigating this case for legitimacy and relevancy. After refusing to cooperate and continuing with this extortion, this individual has begun distributing the data to the public and to media outlets.”
Questioning Whether the Pictures are Legitimate
Despite Binance questioning the legitimacy of the pictures in question, they accept that somebody is trying to blackmail them with 300 BTC, which is a very significant number (roughly $3.5 million.)
However, Binance says that the pictures do not have the platform’s watermarks, so they do not seem to think the images are legitimate. In any case, the exchange clarified that the information is probably related to a leak from January, in which hackers hit several platforms.
A possible explanation for the positive price surge of Binance Coin is that the exchange is widely regarded around the industry for its transparency, and the fact that CZ was so quick to provide a response to the situation was welcomed as a sigh of relief by investors and crypto holders.
By Andres Chavez