It has been revealed that cryptocurrency startups paid out over $878,000 in bounty to friendly hackers for solving bugs in 2018.

The so-called ethical hackers were hired due to a variety of vulnerabilities in start-up platforms’ cybersecurity protocols. About 60 percent of the 2018 total was paid out by Block.one, the company behind EOS, with a sum reported to be around $534,500. The EOS token offering originally raised nearly $4 billion.

Cryptocurrency exchange giant Coinbase paid for white hat hacker services, parting with $290,381 in bounties. Tron also paid out $76,200 to tech problem solvers, demonstrating that even some of the larger, more secure companies still remain vulnerable. Altex, a smaller cryptocurrency firm was also bug stricken in August, although the company has not revealed the amount of funds lost. This was suggested to have been due to Monero code base related bug.

In July, SlowMist, a Chinese cybersecurity firm, claimed that an anonymous user managed to double spend 694 Tether (USDT), gaining credit for 694 USDT on an exchange without sending the funds. The founder of the Omni Protocol, which Tether is based on, wrote:

“It appears that what happened here is that an exchange wasn’t checking the valid flag on transactions. They accepted a transaction with valid=false (which they should not have), and then the second “double spend” transaction had valid=true, which they also accepted.”

The need for such support and fixes illustrates the degree to which the cryptocurrency industry still has much work to do to build failsafe protection for startups and cryptocurrency related companies.

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