Crypto Exchanges Hit by AWS Outage in Tokyo

Problems with Amazon Web Services led to rogue orders and delays on several exchanges.

Leading exchanges saw problems and outages related to the Amazon Web Services, leading to withdrawal problems, 404 messages and even anomalous orders getting filled. Binance was one of the markets getting hit with the outage, as part of its services relied on AWS.

https://twitter.com/cz_binance/status/1164768489040535559

The recent outage is yet another example on how much the crypto sector is dependent on cloud services. Beyond exchanges, some nodes and storage facilities use AWS or other cloud-based services to offer a faster, global experience.

The KuCoin exchange was also affected, warning about limitations to some of its services:

“Due to the overheating of part of our chassis in the machine room we deployed in AWS, Tokyo, part of our services might become unavailable. The engineering operation team is currently deploying relevant resources of high availability across regions to deal with any possible emergencies that might happen. Some services might be affected during the deployment.”

Dovey Wan, co-founder of Primitive Ventures, also noted that the AWS outage led to trading anomalies on Asian exchanges. The order books were mistakenly allowing very cheap BTC purchases:

https://twitter.com/DoveyWan/status/1164795645804179456

While sometimes rogue trades are rolled back, it is possible that the traders managed to withdraw before limitations were set. Beyond Binance and KuCoin, Tokyo-based exchanges have not reported issues so far. Reportedly, BitMex announced the closing of deposits and withdrawals, to avoid losing based on mistaken orders. Critics saw the usage of AWS as a weak spot, and an example of dangerous centralization, exposing the crypto ecosystem to additional risks:

https://twitter.com/JohnyOndis/status/1164771448696610816

The current status for AWS shows that the Tokyo infrastructure is still affected, reporting connectivity issues still active as of 10:50 UTC.

The recent outage has not led to dramatic price moves, as Bitcoin (BTC) remains mostly unchanged around $10,184.14, unaffected by the outage. Despite reports of BTC sold for as low as $10 or even $1, markets are still relatively calm.

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