February 11, 2018 10:03 am JST

Police question Japanese man over Coincheck cryptocurrency theft

TOKYO (Kyodo) -- Police have questioned a Japanese man in connection with last month's massive theft of cryptocurrency from digital currency exchange operator Coincheck Inc., a source close to the investigation said Saturday.

The police learned that the man converted a small amount of the missing NEM coins into another form of cryptocurrency called litecoin through a site on the dark web, which can only be accessed through special software for anonymity, the source said. The man was aware the NEM had been stolen from Coincheck.

A total of about 58 billion yen ($533 million) worth of NEM was stolen on Jan. 26, with more than 500 million yen worth of it likely to have since been converted into bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, according to data security experts.

The NEM was split up and dispersed between several digital addresses.

The Metropolitan Police Department's cybercrime division, which questioned the man on a voluntary basis, suspects several other people were involved in converting the stolen NEM and is monitoring sites on the dark web and NEM transactions to try to identify them, the source said.

NEM.io Foundation, a Singapore-based nonprofit organization promoting NEM, has tagged the missing NEM to make it easier to track.

Get Insights on Asia In Your Inbox

To read the full story, Subscribe or Log in

Get your first month for $0.99

Redeemable only through the Subscribe button below

Once subscribed, you can…

  • Read all stories with unlimited access
  • Use our smartphone and tablet apps

To read the full story, Subscribe or Log in

3 months for $9
SUBSCRIBE TODAY

Take advantage of this limited offer.
Subscribe now to get unlimited access to all articles.

To read the full story, Update your account

Resubscribe now to continue reading.
BEST OFFER:
Only US$ 9.99 per month for a full-year subscription

To read the full story, Subscribe or Log in

Once subscribed, you can…

  • Read all stories with unlimited access
  • Use our smartphone and tablet apps

To read the full story, Subscribe or Log in

3 months for $9
SUBSCRIBE TODAY

Take advantage of this limited offer.
Subscribe now to get unlimited access to all articles.

To read the full story, Update your account

We could not renew your subscription.
You need to update your payment information.