For weeks, popular Bitcoin exchange MtGOX has been embroiled in scandal. On February 7th, the exchange announced that they were halting all withdrawals due to "a bug in the Bitcoin software", a situation which, nearly 3 weeks later, still hasn't been resolved. After a number of recent actions by the exchange, including the deletion of their tweets and the suspension of trading on their site, it seems as if MtGOX is shaping up to shut down. But this may not be MtGOX's swan song: leaked documents seem to show an internal 'crisis strategy' that details a potential restructuring and rebranding plan.
If the outrage over withdrawal suspension isn't enough, users across several popular Bitcoin forums accused MtGOX of insider trading, an allegation which served to compound the massive controversy already faced by the exchange.
Now, it seems as if MtGOX is leaving town. Earlier today, MtGOX CEO Mark Karpeles announced his resignation from the Bitcoin Foundation, a charitable foundation dedicated to "standardizing, protecting and promoting the use of Bitcoin for the benefit of users worldwide". Shortly after, the MtGOX Twitter account deleted all of their tweets. And while many have speculated as to why this may be the case, the final nail in the coffin seems to be the closure of MtGOX's website. At current, the site is still up and running but shows a completely blank page.
A screenshot of MtGOX's "buy and sell" page before the site was taken down, showing that the exchange has suspended all trades.
All of this adds up to what seems to be MtGOX's departure from the Bitcoin market. With their CEO's resignation from the Bitcoin Foundation, as well as the deletion of their social media accounts and the suspension of trading on their website, MtGOX looks to have finally succumbed to the pressure.
However, these recent actions may not mean an end for the exchange after all. According to purportedly leaked documents, the company plans to 'rebrand, restructure and redesign' as an entirely new exchange, simply called 'Gox'.
The documents also noted a few more details about the potential restructuring, amongst which are the resignation of current CEO Mark Karpeles and the introduction of new developers to the exchange. Not all details were positive, however: In an attempt to express the severity of the current situation, the documents state that "744,408 BTC are missing due to malleability-related theft which went unnoted for several years". At current trade values of $240/BTC, this figure shows a loss of nearly $180 million worth of Bitcoins.
The story is still breaking, but by all accounts the leaked documents seem entirely legitimate and the recent deletion of MtGOX's Twitter and the closure of their website only seems to support this theory of "restructuring".
This article will be updated as more info arises.
Source: Leaked documents via Scribd | Image via Google