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Crypto.com refunded someone $7.2 million by mistake

It took the company seven months to even notice the error and now it wants the money back.

BRAZIL - 2022/04/12: In this photo illustration, a woman's silhouette holds a smartphone with the Crypto.com logo in the background. (Photo Illustration by Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)
SOPA Images via Getty Images
Kris Holt
Kris Holt|@krisholt|August 31, 2022 11:44 AM

When Australian woman Thevamanogari Manivel put in a Crypto.com refund request last year, she got far more than she bargained for. Manivel asked for a refund of $100 AUD (now worth around $68 USD). Instead, seemingly due to an employee entering her account number into a payment section of a refund form by mistake, the company dropped $10.5 million AUD ($7.2 million at current exchange rates) into her account instead.

According to a report from 7News (by way of The Verge) Crypto.com made the overly generous refund in May last year. However, it apparently did not identify the mistake until it carried out an audit in December, seven entire Gregorian calendar months later.

Manivel kept the money and reportedly transferred it to a bank account. A court granted Crypto.com a freeze on the account in February. The Guardian reports that most of the cash had been moved to other accounts by then, but those accounts were later frozen too. That same month, Manivel is said to have spent $1.35 million AUD (approximately $890,000) on a five-bedroom home and transferred ownership of it to her sister. A court has ordered the sale of the property as soon as possible and for the funds to be returned to Crypto.com with interest. The case will return to court in October.

Perhaps not too long ago, Crypto.com might have been more willing to write off the refund as a deeply unfortunate mistake. But the cryptocurrency market has been tanking this year and the company lost $34 million in a January hack. It also laid off hundreds of employees this summer due to the crypto downturn.

So, it's perhaps not too surprising that Crypto.com is trying to get the money back from Manivel. After all, it has a long-term arena sponsorship deal in Los Angeles, for which it's said to be paying $700 million over 20 years, and a Matt Damon to keep fed.

Crypto.com refunded someone $7.2 million by mistake