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Brooke Hopkins

19 October 2022 103 Read Crypto

Crypto hackers steal $3 billion in 2022

This year has been a record-breaker for crypto hacking with 125 attacks on crypto networks. This year alone, hackers have taken over $3 billion in a series of attacks. In October alone, hackers broke into decentralized finance protocols and stole over $718 million. 2022 will likely surpass 2021 as the year with the most hacks.

One hack resulted in the loss of $100 million from decentralized trading platform Mango, while another drained the trading protocol of the cryptocurrency exchange Temple DAO of over $100 million. These attacks are just two of the many examples of the types of hacks that occur on the crypto network.

Cross-chain bridges are a major target for hackers

The popularity of cryptocurrency has increased the incentives for hackers to strike, and this is leading to more cross-chain bridge attacks. In fact, more than $1 billion in cryptocurrency has been stolen in 13 different bridge hacks this year alone, according to reports. The North Korean state-sponsored Lazarus Group has been responsible for many of these attacks. This makes these types of attacks not only a serious threat to the cryptocurrency industry, but also to national security.

One of the most prominent attacks this year targeted the Binance chain, which used a decentralized bridge. In order to perform the attack, the attacker had to compromise five validators and steal nine private keys. Another attack, called Nomad, involved a simple bridge that required no programming skills and allowed the attackers to withdraw funds. The Nomad attack was the eighth largest crypto theft in history, and the attackers were able to do so without any technical knowledge.

North Korea-affiliated groups have stolen over $3 billion in crypto across 125 hacks

Cryptocurrency is the latest target for North Korean hackers. The infamous group is accused of stealing $620 million from the video game Axie Infinity, the biggest cryptocurrency theft in history. The theft was a result of phishing attacks that lured victims with fake LinkedIn recruitment pages. The hackers then used complex financial instruments to transfer the stolen funds. The funds moved through cryptocurrency "mixers," which combine multiple streams of digital assets, making it more difficult to track the movement of a single batch.

These attacks have led to investigations into the groups' identities and methods of attack. In April, the U.S. Department of Justice charged a North Korean man in the Wannacry attack, and it was also reported that North Korean hackers are behind a group called Lazarus. The group is believed to be behind several high-profile hacks, including the Sony Pictures hack. The group has also been implicated in a series of cyberattacks on South Korean companies. It is also suspected of breaching the cyber command of the South Korean government. Similarly, the Wannacry 2.0 ransomware attack has compromised aviation and rail networks in Europe and Asia.