Who owns Blockfolio? Hacker breaches cryptocurrency app, sends N-word rant and 'child porn' link to users

Who owns Blockfolio? Hacker breaches cryptocurrency app, sends N-word rant and 'child porn' link to users
Edward Moncada, the co-founder and CEO of Blockfolio (LinkedIN)

On February 8, Monday, the news and signal feed on the cryptocurrency app Blockfolio was hacked with reports indicating that the hacker even sent messages to users claiming that there will be a "closure of all services to black people and [N-word]."

Some even went as far as saying, "best child porn is available here" with a link attached. On Tuesday, Blockfolio apologized for the situation and blamed the hacking on a so-called competitor while also adding that the hack did not "impact any trading features" on the application.

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After the hack occurred, many users were sent push notifications announcing the same, as reported by The Daily Mail. They were also "warned" that if black people did not "withdraw" from the app, they would experience an "immediate loss of funds". It wasn't much longer before screenshots were shared through social media highlighting the awful messages. The hack also changed the names of some of the currencies, changing them to '[N-word]coin'.

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What happened?

The company apologized via Twitter. They wrote: "We are incredibly sorry about the offensive messages posted today. 1: no funds/etc. were affected; this did not interact with any trading features. 2: we have revoked access to the compromised Signal submitter and removed the messages." They also added, "3: the tracking parts of the app are coming back online momentarily. 4: all Blockfolio users with trading enabled have been credited with $10 free, as will anyone else who signs up this week (max 1m people)."

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The horrid push notifications were attributed to Jason Hamlin, who provides ecosystem insights at the company, according to Newsweek. Jason, too, tweeted about the situation: "It looks like a Blockfolio marketing account was hacked and someone posted disgusting and offensive things under my name. This obviously was not me nor anyone at Blockfolio and does not impact security of funds in any way. The team is working diligently to correct the matter."

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While Blockfolio was been down after the offensive notifications went out, the "Tracking parts of the app" were brought back online quite quickly, reports say. FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried also took to Twitter to address the incident on a thread.

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A part of the thread read: "This offensive content was produced and published by a competitor exchange of ours who maliciously gained access to someone else's Blockfolio News/Signal capabilities. We condemn their actions in the strongest way possible. We have always and will always strive to work with others in the industry--whether customers, builders, or competitors. We will rise and fall together and this industry has no place for this behavior." As for which competitor Fried was referring to is not known.

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Some came to Blockfolio's defense, others mocked their apology

People took to Twitter in disbelief wondering how push notifications as such were sent out. Some also added screenshots.

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A user wrote adding the screenshot of the notification: "we are sad to announce we closure of our services to all black people". The user tweeted, "No one is gonna post this hack? There is an underlying racism/ sexism in crypto that needs to be rejected Obviously not @blockfolio @Dashpay or @binance"


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Some defended the company. "Its actually horrible that @blockfolio have to apologise, when you think about it they are the victims as well.. it's like Renault apologising because a drunk driver ran someone over! I feel sorry for their business," wrote one user.

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Another added, "100000% not your fault....Life goes on, no biggie at all.....Do NOT acknowedlge the handful of absolute morons whi are crying about this.....Its a clear hack, not even worthy of an apology to be honest....Too many soft people nowadays."

Some on the other hand didn't think the companies apology was enough with one user writing, "@BlkBTCBillions get all your funds out of @blockfolio that was a weak ass apology #BLACKBITCOINBILLIONAIRES."

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Another angry Twitterati added, "This wasn't a real apology. Your tone deaf corporate form letter shows the lack of human empathy and compassion you have for the POC community and children! Yes, people care about the money aspect, but you just lost clients. Including me."


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Who owns Blockfolio?

The FTX-owned app sees Ed Moncada as its co-founder and CEO. He is also one of the founding members of the DASH Foundation, a self-proclaimed "Animal lover, husband to an incredible wife, and pretty much a full-time insomniac."

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Edward Moncada, the co-founder & CEO of Blockfolio (blockfolio.com)

In an interview, Moncada calls himself a "long time crypto lover" adding that he first learned of Bitcoin in 2012 and bought his first one the next year in March.

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"I actually bought 1 BTC to play poker on an online bitcoin poker site (which was my professional career in a prior life). After 3 months of poker, I had run my account up to 150 BTC. I cashed out 100 of them (worth around $10k in total at the time…sigh) and it took 48 hours for the fiat to hit my Chase account. Given the significant efforts that the US government had made to restrict money moving in and out of online gambling sites (which I was very familiar with due to my prior poker career) I immediately knew I stumbled upon something special because this nascent technology circumvented that," he said. 

The CEO also introduced Blockfolio in the interview revealing that in 2014 he was "scouring Bitcointalk forums" to find "other innovations." He added that one day when he asked another forum member named Charlie Mason if he would like to collaborate on research, he had found Blockfolio co-founder and "its original CEO."

Interestingly, Moncada also spoke of how Peter Lau, came to be the technical co-founder of Blockfolio —  through a friend named Richard, who spoke of how Lau had built an app called Pocked in college.

The interview gets into further details about how the company came to be, their "wave of interest" in 2017, a boom in user adoption, and many other aspects.

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