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Japanese Exchange Faces Technical Glitch, Offers Free Bitcoins

21 February 2018

The Zaif exchange run by Osaka-based Tech Bureau Corp. saw the brief glitch last week which enabled traders to make crypto purchases for free, according to Reuters.

A Japanese cryptocurrency exchange experienced a glitch that briefly dropped the price of Bitcoin to zero.

The exchange voided the trades after discovering the error, which happened on February 16 - though it was still trying to resolve the issue with one customer who tried to transfer the knock-down bitcoins from the exchange, a spokesman told Reuters.

Zaif is one of 16 exchanges registered with the government, which past year allowed a further 16 - including Coincheck - to continue operating pending full registration. The bug temporarily priced Bitcoin at zero yen, but the company quickly caught wind of the problem and shut it down.

Japanese digital currency exchanges are once again in the spotlight and not for the right reasons.

Six of the transactions have been voided. Zaif rectified the glitch the same day. Aso said they were trying to find out if local exchanges were taking adequate steps to protect customers' accounts.

Japan has been an early adopter of cryptocurrency, going so far as to recognize the cryptocurrency as a legal payment method in 2017.

According to Reuters, which cites unnamed sources, the crypto exchanges made a decision to form a self-regulating body to better safeguard investors after the Coincheck hack. All bitcoins in circulation are worth just $187 billion. However, given the hack at Coincheck, which resulted in the theft of $530 million worth of NEM at the end of January, this won't do anything to enthuse confidence with regulators.

Japanese Exchange Faces Technical Glitch, Offers Free Bitcoins