The crypto exchange QuadrigaCX reported $145 million in crypto assets missing after the sudden death of its founder Gerry Cotten according to the daily blockchain news media outlet from Canada-The Globe.
According to the records of The Globe, the firm has been unable to trace the missing assets since the founder of the exchange passed on December 9 which led the exchange into a liquidity crisis. QuadrigaCX filed for creditor protection since it only has $286,000 in cash and owes $198,435,000 to its users.
The exchange has most of its assets in offline storage-cold wallets which are secured with digital securities keys to protect them from theft and hacking. The company also struggles to find the corresponding keys of the wallets after Cotten’s passing.
Ernst & Young auditing firm was selected as the independent third party in the proceedings and according to their reports:
‘’QuadrigaCX was unable to access the cold wallets and/or discovered that the cold wallets contained minimal cryptocurrency units.’’
Cotten used to work mostly from home from his own computer which is encrypted. His wife also claimed that she doesn’t know the password or recovery key and that she hasn’t been able to find them in written form. A cybersecurity expert was also hired to hack Cotten’s computer but it was unsuccessful.
Other exchange operators believe that it’s extremely strange for a single executive to control all of the asset’s funds such as Michael Gokturk the CEO of Einstein Exchange who thinks that having all the control of the assets is the same as walking with millions of dollars in cash on you all of the time.
Users who were unable to withdraw their funds even asked for a proof of the death certificate of Cotten or an obituary.
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