The sudden rise in Bitcoin value has shifted many investors towards cryptocurrency. Many are investing, trying to find the next big cryptocurrency to invest in. Cryptocurrencies have gained momentum, like Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Ripple and their values have skyrocketed. Bitcoin made global news as its value rose above $10,000 per unit. However, cryptocurrency isn’t regulated and like Coincheck found, it may not be secure either. Last week more than $500 million were stolen from Coincheck, a major Japanese cryptocurrency exchange was hacked. The hackers managed to take 523 million NEM coins in one of the largest heist of cryptocurrencies in history. The hack affected 260,000 individuals and following the hack Coincheck announced that it will pay $425 million to those affected.

With the hack, many are now asking for heightened security and regulation over cryptocurrencies. Currently the majority of cryptocurrencies are unregulated. Bitcoin, the online currency with the most value, has just recently begun attaining regulatory status in the US, Japan, and other countries. Other currencies are lacking security and regulation. Investing in new, emerging cryptocurrencies can be very rewarding, but comes with a lot of risk. Digital assets are subject to hacking attacks if not properly stored. Because of the success of this hack on Coincheck that cost investors over $500 million, there is likely to be a rise in hacks targeted at cryptocurrency exchanges. There needs to be more regulation and more security. Coincheck held on to its NEM coins in what is called a hot wallet, a digital wallet with access to the internet. This is how they were hacked. Experts suggest investors hold on to their digital assets in Cold Wallets by digitally storing their assets on USBs or hard drives that can be disconnected from the internet, and safe from hacking. Technology is rapidly changing, and with the emergence of cryptocurrencies and the success of Bitcoin many people are flocking towards unsafe investments. Regulations must be set in place to protect investors from attacks, and exchanges like Coincheck have a responsibility to increase their security.