Bithumb ordered to pay customers for service outage

  • Bithumb had a one and half hour outage that caused customers to lose funds.
  • South Korean Supreme Court has ordered the exchange to pay the customers for the damages.
  • Initially, a district court had ruled in favour of the exchange but the ruling was later overturned.

The local courts in South Korea have ordered that Bithumb is supposed to pay just about $200,000 for damages to 132 customers affected by a service outage on January 12, 2023.

On January 13, The South Korean Supreme Court ruled that Bithumb exchange should pay damages caused to customers after the 1.5-hour service outage. According to the Supreme Court, the exchange was to pay damages equivalent to $202,400 (251.4 million won). Customers are supposed to be paid as little as $6 to as much as $6,400.

According to the final ruling by the Supreme Court:

“The burden or the cost of technological failures should be shouldered by the service operator, not [the] service users who pay commission for the service.”

Initially, a district court had ruled against the customers before the matter was moved to the Supreme Court which overturned the earlier ruling and issued a final ruling on the matter.

Bithumb in South Korea

Bithumb is the largest cryptocurrency exchange in operation in South Korea and the service outage was caused by a sudden surge in the average amount of orders per hour coupled with bottle-necked transaction flows.

Bithumb has also been under investigation for the sudden death of one of the largest shareholders following embezzlement claims. There is also a special tax investigation on the exchange after authorities suspected the exchange of possible tax evasion.

Bithumb headquarters were actually raided by the National Tax Service (NTS) on January 10.

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