TOKYO — When Mark Karpeles, the CEO of what was once the world’s largest Bitcoin exchange, said that the company had gone bankrupt because 800,000 bitcoins (worth nearly half a billion dollars at the time) had been hacked, he wasn’t exactly lying. He wasn’t exactly telling the whole truth, either, but there was an intriguing element of fact.
At least 80,000 had been hacked before Karpeles even took over the company, and that initial cyber theft began a spiral of trouble that may have led directly to the firm’s financial collapse.
This week The Daily Beast obtained internal emails, contracts,, and other documents related to the implosion of Karpeles’s company, Mt. Gox. Along with information provided by a former employee who handled accounting for the firm, the documents reveal previously unreported details about how Mt. Gox failed, and why.