Although the year 2023 has recently started, the crypto industry has seen several developments in the respective short period. Particularly, in the case of exploits, the industry has been hit with a loss of up to $119 million up till now this year, as mentioned in a recent report published by Crystal Blockchain. The report takes into account data starting from the hack of the crypto exchange Mt. Gox that took place in 2011 till February 18 this year.
Crystal Blockchain Says Crypto Exploiters Drained $119M Solely in 2023
According to the data provided by the report, the biggest hack in the decentralized finance (DeFi) sector up till now in 2023 was Bonq DAO’s. The respective hack took place in the previous month. Bonq DAO is known as a decentralized protocol for borrowing. The exploiters effectively compromised the smart contract of the protocol and then manipulated the AllianceBlock tokens’ price.
This event resulted in the drainage of nearly $88M worth of crypto assets from the protocol. Following that, the exploitation of Platypus Finance is considered to be the 2nd-largest event in the DeFi world. The respective DeFi protocol is responsible for issuing the stablecoin called USP. In February 2023, the exploiters performed a flash loan exploit to take away assets from the DeFi protocol.
Due to the flash loan exploit, the stable lost its peg, and approximately $9M in funds belonging to the consumers was drained. Nonetheless, dissimilar to several analogous events, the respective incident witnessed a good ending. The protocol remained successful in partly refunding the consumers.
In addition to this, the investigators of the platform tracked down the wallets of the exploiters to the well-known crypto exchange Binance. After tracking the hackers, the DeFi protocol reached them and detained a couple of them in France. The report also pointed toward the single largest phishing exploit of this year.
As per the report, Kevin Rose – the prominent collector of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) – lost almost $1M worth in the form of NFTs. This occurred when his wallet got compromised back in January this year. Several attacks have been targeting the vulnerabilities existing in the design and code of the decentralized protocols.
This indicates a bigger trend that has been seen since 2021. Along with this, it has also been witnessed that the hackers started taking an additional interest in decentralized finance (DeFi) instead of moving toward the crypto exchanges within the centralized finance (CeFi). Keeping in view the cumulative hacks that took place back in the year 2022, the hackers exploited thirteen times more DeFi protocols in comparison with the centralized entities, the report added.
The largest attack took place on the cross-chain bridge of Ronin in 2022’s March. The respective exploit resulted in the drainage of up to $635M stolen in the form of digital tokens. In 2022, 199 attacks were witnessed in which nearly $4.17B was stolen, according to Crystal. This estimation is higher than the data provided by Chainalysis, which signifies that $3.8B was stolen last year.
NFT Rug Pulls Increase in Number
As per the reports, additional information regarding criminal activities points out that the methods of these attacks may get evolved with time. Crystal also discovered an increasing trend of rug pulls in the NFT sector. The previous year saw 48 scams of this type, and 41 of them took place in the year’s 2nd half.