Kraken, Cobinhood, Poloniex Top List of Safest Exchanges

ICORating ranked exchanges by safety following a series of hacks and exploits.

ICORatings.com has issued a rating chart of centralized exchanges listed by safety after the hack of Cryptopia and the prospect of many users losing funds or seeing their holdings locked for months. Kraken, Cobinhood, and Poloniex top the ranking in this group, while DDEX, Airswap, and IDEX have been named the safest among decentralized exchanges (DEXs).

Estimating the risk for any given exchange is extremely difficult, especially in an industry still learning the rules of security. For instance, Bancor is among the safest DEXs although the exchange was attacked via a faulty smart contract.

One possible vulnerability to exploit is the human factor, which could result in keys to wallets being stolen from personal laptops or through social engineering and phishing. Other potential risks are exit scams and insider thefts. The third possibility involves blockchain technology itself, either through exploiting smart contracts to produce fake tokens or through double-spending in the case of a 51% attack.

Despite perching at the top, Poloniex has often been criticized for glitches and unexpected outages. In the past days, it entered yet another unexpected maintenance:

https://twitter.com/Poloniex/status/1086009030114463749

Even some of the best and most transparent exchanges have come under attack, including Binance, where accounts without 2FA were exploited for rogue trades. Kraken, which tops the list, has warned users not to store all of their funds on exchanges.

https://twitter.com/maxekaplan/status/952014377447821312

Kraken’s co-founder, however, has invited caution:

https://twitter.com/jespow/status/1085348666699739141

Separate coins and wallets also hold risks when it comes to exchanges. Newer assets hosted on small platforms are especially risky. Such is the case with NANO, initially RAI Blocks, which was hurt by the BitGrail hack. Wallet issues as those of Bytecoin (BCN) created problems for Cryptopia and Binance in the past.

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