When Mt. Gox, the world’s largest bitcoin exchange, collapsed in early 2014, more than 24,000 customers lost access to their money. Mt. Gox was handling more than 70% of all bitcoin transactions at the time, and the loss of such a large chunk of the market caused a major sell-off that drove the price of bitcoin down by nearly 50%.
In total, Mt. Gox lost 850,000 bitcoins, worth more than $450 million at today’s prices.
The collapse of Mt. Gox was a major blow to the nascent bitcoin community, and it took years for the price of bitcoin to recover.
The incident also highlighted the need for better security and regulation in the bitcoin space, which has since been addressed to some degree by the launch of regulated exchanges and custody services.