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Mt. Gox, once the world's biggest Bitcoin exchange, went dark Tuesday, with its website down, its Tokyo office empty, and a cryptic comment from its chief executive that the business was at "a turning point".The digital marketplace operator, which began as a venue for trading cards, had surged to the top of the Bitcoin world, but critics – from rival exchanges to burned investors – said Mt. Gox had long been lax over its security.Tokyo investors in the frontier electronic currency, who have endured a volatile ride in the value of the unregulated cyber-tender, said the problem was with Mt. Gox, not with the revolutionary Bitcoin itself.Six leading Bitcoin exchanges – which allow users to trade Bitcoins for U.S. dollars and other currencies – distanced themselves from Mt. Gox.Mt. Gox, a Bitcoin exchange since 2010, is a relatively old player, having grown quickly when there were few alternatives.The Mt. Gox Bitcoin, which traded at $828.99 before Feb. 7, when the exchange halted withdrawals, has since plunged 83.7 percent to $135 .Users say the problem with Mt. Gox is isolated and not with the virtual currency even though Bitcoin globally has taken a beating to its value and reputation since the problem surfaced.
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