The problem with virtual currency is that it doesn’t take an Italian Job-style heist to make off with hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of Bitcoins. There’s no need for expert safe crackers, gun-wielding maniacs or limber laser dippers; despite the currency’s hardcore encryption, all you need is an Internet connection, a hacker and probably some Mountain Dew.
The relative ease and inexpensiveness of robbing a Bitcoin repository has most likely contributed to the rash of heists the virtual currency has endured since June 2011. Bitcoin has certainly seen its share of bad publicity. Over the last 15 months, more than 290,000 BTC have been stolen, according to CNET and Bitcoin talk forum.
A big heist on Monday night signaled the 10th since June, and was so damaging that it has shut down BTC exchange BitFloor, which–according to BitFloor founder Roman Shtylman–is the number one USD exchange in the U.S. (Mr. Shtylman says it also ranks number four worldwide.) The hacker successfully stole 24,000 BTC, which amounts to over $250,000 as of this writing. Read More