Hackers have stolen $1.97bn worth of crypto from January to June 2022

Temitope Akintade
Hackers have stolen $1.97bn worth of crypto from January to June 2022

According to analyzed data by the Atlas VPN Team that was released yesterday, crypto thieves have managed to steal $1.97 billion worth from about 175 crypto project hacks in the first half of this year, 2022.

The data is based on the numbers provided by Slowmist Hacked (an analytics platform that gathers information about disclosed cyber attacks on blockchain projects).

According to the report, hackers have managed to get away with $1.97 billion from 175 crypto project hacks since January 1, 2022. The leading victims of these attacks are the Ethereum ecosystem, which lost over $1 billion in 32 hacking attacks.

Note: Monetary losses were calculated based on the conversion rate/ market value of a particular cryptocurrency at the time of a hack/scam.

This represents a surge in criminal activities in the crypto space despite the difficult situation flagship asset bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies have been experiencing since the beginning of the year.

Particularly, the predominant hack was the Ronin attack which took place in March. In which the cybercriminals took more than $600 million in ETH and USD Coin (USDC).

Hackers have stolen $1.97bn worth of crypto from January to June 2022
Money lost to crypto criminals in H1 2022. Source: Atlas VPN

The Solana ecosystem is the second most affected. It suffered a loss of $383.9 million in five scam incidents. The largest of the attacks was the exploit of the DeFi platform Wormhole, where crypto criminals made away with $326 million. 

Binance Smart Chain (BSC) occupies the third position. The ecosystem faced a total of 47 attacks in half 1 2022 and it was drained of $141.4 million. The highest(47 hacks) among all networks. 

Notably, in January, Qubit Finance suffered an exploit during which $80 million worth of Binance coins (BNB) were drained from Qubit’s QBridge protocol.

NFT projects also had their fair share of the bitter pie. Cybercriminals stole $84.6 million in 45 events. Fantom ecosystem lost $54.8 million in 8 events.

Crypto exchanges were robbed of $35.8 million in 4 events, Polygon ecosystem, $13.1 million in 2 events and Avalanche ecosystem, $8.3 million in one hack.

Blockchain projects lost $3.5 million in 5 events and crypto wallets with $263,382 lost in 2 cyber incidents. Losses to other crypto-related cyber hacks amounted to $236.2 million in 24 incidents.

Comparison to 2021

A closer look at the figures shows that cryptocurrency-related crimes are growing at an alarming pace. In comparison with last year, crypto cyber crimes have risen from 90 in the first half of 2021 to 175 in the same period in 2022.

This shows a 94% increase. 

Hackers have stolen $1.97bn worth of crypto from January to June 2022
Crypto scams rose by 94% in H1 2022 compared to H1 2021

Compared to Quarter 1 2021’s 38 crypto crime occurrences, Q1 2022 had 79, a 108% increase in incidents of criminal attacks. Also, the second quarter of 2022 recorded 96 attacks, an 85% growth compared to 52 in the second quarter of 2022.

Conclusively, the report said crypto cyber crimes increased by 22% from the first quarter of 2022 to the second quarter. May was the worst month, having recorded 37 attacks. 

107 Discord hacked from June to July

According to on-chain analyst OKHotshot, 107 NFT Discord servers were compromised between June 2 to July 2.

In an attempt to warn investors, he revealed via Twitter on Sunday that there have been 107 NFT Discord channels exploited through social engineering within the last four weeks. 

Hackers have stolen $1.97bn worth of crypto from January to June 2022
Image source: Okhotshot Twitter

The compromised collections include big projects like BAYC, KnowOrigin, Lacoste, and Memeland (9gag) and other prominent projects. 

OKHotShot has asked NFT buyers and holders to “stay vigilant”. He further revealed that 71 Discord servers were compromised in May, and the number hiked to 107 in June, which shows a sharp surge of 50.7%.

What’s next?

Blockchain technology is in its nascent stage which means it is still undergoing fortifications to minimize system vulnerabilities that have led to exploits by crypto criminals on various networks.

As crypto scams heighten, there are renewed calls from regulators and other market players for umbrella regulation which they believe will address the issue to a reasonable extent.

According to Ashley Alder, the chairperson of the International Organisation of Securities Commissions, cryptocurrency could get its own global regulatory body as soon as next year.


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