NiceHash Completes 4,640 Bitcoin Reimbursement to 2017 Hack Victims

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In Brief
  • NiceHash has finished reimbursing victims of its Dec. 2017 security compromise.

  • An apparent spearfishing attack saw more than 4,640 BTC drained from the company's wallet.

  • NiceHash operated on the minimum resources needed to survive while reimbursing users.

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NiceHash has finally finished reimbursing users impacted by a December 2017 security compromise. The cloud mining company has paid back a total of 4,640 bitcoin.

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The firm has been gradually diverting profits to its users for almost three years. It started the refund process in Feb. 2018.

NiceHash Rounds off 2020 by Completing Ongoing User Refund

The NiceHash cloud mining company had a double cause for celebration on Wednesday. The bitcoin price finally exploded past its former all-time high, which coincided with the completion of user refunds after almost three years.

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NiceHash reportedly fell victim to a spearfishing attack on Dec. 6, 2017. The Slovenian company lost 4,640 BTC (~$64 million at the time) of its users’ funds when an employee’s computer was apparently compromised.

According to a press release published Wednesday, NiceHash completed its Repayment Program on Dec. 16. Its CEO, Martin Škorjanc, thanked those users who continued to trust the company over the period.

In a letter addressed to NiceHash users, mining enthusiasts, and the extended cryptocurrency community, Škorjanc described how ‘consultants and experts’ had predicted the cloud mining company’s demise following the widely reported hack.

He then detailed how the firm managed to complete the reimbursement of more than $100 million at today’s bitcoin price. The company reportedly operated on the bare minimum needed for survival while waiving profits and transferring excess funds to impacted users.

Expressing pride in the team’s efforts, Škorjanc wrote:

“… it heralds the beginning of a new era of growth and development for us. We don’t owe anyone anything anymore. We have fully settled all tax liabilities, and 4,640 bitcoins are again in our users’ accounts.”

Identity of NiceHash Hackers Still Unknown

As Škorjanc mentioned in Thursday’s letter, it’s still unclear who compromised NiceHash’s security. According to Slovenian news publication Total Slovenia News, both Europol and the FBI investigated the hack.

NiceHash also hired digital forensics firm Lifars to find the perpetrator. Interestingly, Matjaz Škorjanc, NiceHash’s CTO, and the CEO’s son was previously associated with malware distribution.

Matjaz reportedly served a five-year sentence in Slovenia for his role in creating the Mariposa botnet, which infected millions of computers. He was released in late-2017.

As BeInCrypto reported in 2019, the FBI charged Matjaz with racketeering and conspiracy to commit wire and bank fraud. In a blog post regarding its CTO, the company stated that the indictment was not related to NiceHash or its security breach.

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A former professional gambler, Rick first found Bitcoin in 2013 whilst researching alternative payment methods to use at online casinos. After transitioning to writing full-time in 2016, he put a growing passion for Bitcoin to work for him. He has since written for a number of digital asset publications.

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