scorecardCoinbase is giving some customers bitcoin worth $100 after sending them security-alert emails by mistake
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Coinbase is giving some customers bitcoin worth $100 after sending them security-alert emails by mistake

Sophie Kiderlin   

Coinbase is giving some customers bitcoin worth $100 after sending them security-alert emails by mistake
Investment2 min read
Shannon Stapleton/Reuters
  • Coinbase is giving bitcoin credit worth $100 to customers who got an email alerting them to a security change in error.
  • Around 125,000 users were told their two-factor authentication settings had changed, sparking fears they had been hacked.
  • Coinbase is offering $100 in bitcoin to "some users" adversely affected, but did not specify how many.

Coinbase is handing out bitcoin worth $100 to customers who took a hit after the crypto exchange mistakenly sent them a notification alerting them to a change in their security settings.

The alerts went out to about 125,000 of the crypto exchange's users by email or text message, informing them that their two-factor authentication settings had been changed, Coinbase said on Twitter at the weekend.

As most people had not adjusted the setting themselves, this sparked fears among them that their accounts had been hacked. Such 2FA settings - an extra security measure to check people are authorized to access an account - can typically be reset only by the customers themselves.

In response to complaints, some people who got the notification will get $100 in bitcoin, Coinbase said on Reddit.

"To confirm, we are crediting a small number of users who were adversely affected by this incident with $100USD worth of BTC," Coinbase said in a post to its support page subreddit.

The company has not specified how many customers make up that "small number," and it did not respond to Insider's request for comment. The cost to Coinbase if all 125,000 received the handout would be $12.5 million.

A bitcoin was worth $47,539.71 early Tuesday, according to CoinGecko data, so $100 would buy roughly 0.21% of a coin. Sev earl people said on Reddit and Twitter that they have received the credit to their Coinbase accounts.

Over the weekend, Coinbase said that the alert message was sent due to a problem with its notification system and not to malicious behavior. It said it had resolved the issue as soon as possible, and said it recognized the situation had hurt the trust of its customers.

"We're laser focused on building trust and security into the crypto community so that the open financial system we all want is a reality. We recognize that issues like this can hurt that trust," Coinbase said.

The crypto exchange went public earlier this year in a tumultuous direct listing, during which it debuted at $381, far above it's $250 reference price, before tumbling as much as 19%. Shares were trading less than 1% lower at $260.80 on Tuesday morning.

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