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Cryptopia logo

Cryptopia is a New Zealand cryptocurrency exchange based in Christchurch, which was the target of a multi-million dollar theft in January 2019.


Cryptopia was founded in 2014 by Rob Dawson and Adam Clark. They quit their jobs in 2017 in order to work on the exchange full time.[1]

In May 2017 Cryptopia launched the New Zealand Dollar Token (NZDT), a cryptocurrency whose value is supposed to be pegged to the New Zealand Dollar.[2]

From May to December 2017 Cryptopia grew from 30,000 to 1,000,000 users.[3] In January 2018, they temporarily suspended new account registrations and trading in their Dogecoin and Litecoin markets, claiming they could not handle the influx of trades.[4]

In January 2018, Cryptopia announced that ASB Bank would be closing their accounts associated with NZDT in February. As a result, Cryptopia stopped accepting deposits into NZDT and told customers to withdraw the associated funds by the closing date.[5][6] Cryptopia planned to relaunch NZDT in early 2019 after making a deal with a new, smaller bank.[7]

On January 15, 2019 Cryptopia announced that they had "suffered a security breach which resulted in significant losses".[8] A report from Elementus, a New York based blockchain company, estimated the value of stolen funds to be around $23 million NZD ($16 million USD). It also stated that the theft began on January 14 and continued until the 17th.[9]


  1. ^ Hutching, Chris (January 10, 2018). "From a two-man operation a year ago, Cryptopia surges on bitcoin".
  2. ^ Hutching, Chris (May 12, 2017). "Christchurch company launches new digital currency".
  3. ^ Mitchell, Paul (December 31, 2017). "Kiwi bitcoin investors concerned over Australian bank controversy".
  4. ^ Ryan, Holly (January 9, 2018). "Customers furious as Cryptopia halts trading". The New Zealand Herald.
  5. ^ Ryan, Holly (January 31, 2018). "Bank closes Cryptopia account". The New Zealand Herald.
  6. ^ Edmunds, Susan (February 1, 2018). "Bank pulls support for cryptocurrency platform Cryptopia".
  7. ^ Mandow, Nikki (November 8, 2018). "Suspended NZ crypto 'coins' to be re-released". Newsroom.
  8. ^ "Police say Cryptopia investigation a 'complex' situation". The New Zealand Herald. January 16, 2019.
  9. ^ Theunissen, Matthew (January 26, 2019). "Cryptopia funds still being drained by hackers while police investigated". RNZ News.

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