South Korea Awards Information Security License To Upbit Exchange For Strong Data Security

South Korea Awards Information Security License To Upbit For Strong Data Security

South Korea has issued an information security management license to Upbit for its strong infrastructure. The license shows that the Seoul-based cryptocurrency exchange has implemented effective data management and security procedures to protect South Korean crypto traders.

The license was issued by South Korea’s Internet and Security Agency (KISA). The information security management system (ISMS) license was awarded after an analysis of Upbit’s infrastructure.

That makes Upbit the first ISMS-licensed exchange in South Korea. Today, Upbit remains one of the country’s largest and most popular cryptocurrency exchanges, currently sitting just outside the top 10 worldwide exchanges for 24 hour trading volume.

This is a big deal for crypto. In December 2017, the South Korean government declared that all internet and data-related companies generating more than $100 million in revenue would require an ISMS license.

In order to receive a license from the KISA, internet and data-related companies are analyzed based on over 100 criteria. Companies are analyzed to determine if they have adequate data management and storage procedures, for example, and strong security protocols.

It’s possible that South Korea’s other major cryptocurrency exchanges, Bithumb, Korbit, and Coinone, will follow suit. As reported by, it’s “likely” that the KISA will now request these three exchanges to request license filings.

It’s unclear if any other South Korean cryptocurrency exchanges are currently making their way through the ISMS licensing process.

South Korea Emphasizes Internet Security With Strong Licensing Requirements

Some countries are taking a lax approach to data security and information tracking. South Korea, meanwhile, is taking the opposite approach by enforcing and regulating standards among internet companies.

In the world of cryptocurrency, this is particularly important. Cryptocurrency exchanges hold millions of dollars in digital currency that can be stolen by a single hacker in minutes. Hackers are constantly testing the defenses of these exchanges. One intrusion can lead to the loss of millions of dollars in funds.

To prevent this from happening, the South Korea Internet and Security Agency (KISA) is taking an active approach. This past August, the KISA issued a statement claiming that only a handful of South Korean cryptocurrency exchanges had adequate internal management systems:

“There still exists many cryptocurrency exchanges with subpar security systems and as such, investors are cautioned in investing through unrecognized platforms. The government will continue to monitor and evaluate cryptocurrency exchanges to improve the standard of security employed by trading platforms.”

Since that statement was released in August, cryptocurrency exchanges have taken note. Bithumb, in fact, suspended trading for over a month while updating its exchange infrastructure to comply with requirements. Today, Bithumb and other major exchanges comply with strict Know Your Customer (KYC) and Anti-Money Laundering (AML) policies.

Upbit Claims To Use Top Class Security Experts To Safeguard Data

Upbit seems happy about receiving its ISMS license from the KISA. The cryptocurrency exchange claims that it has been working tirelessly throughout 2018 to upgrade its infrastructure. Today’s license approval is a signal that all of the hard work has paid off.

Here’s what Lee Seok-wu, CEO of Upbit’s parent company, had to say in a statement to South Korean media:

“Since early 2018, Upbit has been working tirelessly to improve the platform’s internal management system and security measures to obtain the ISMS license. With top class security experts and tested security systems, the company will continue to create a safe trading environment and protect the data of its investors.”

Upbit currently ranks as the 11th largest cryptocurrency exchange in the world by 24 hour trading volume.

While crypto prices plummet, South Korea is positioning itself as a dominant player in the crypto exchange space. Other countries are fumbling to create effective cryptocurrency regulations. South Korea, meanwhile, is starting to individually approve its cryptocurrency exchanges to ensure they’re handling customer data safely.

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