Home Cryptocurrency News Report $3.8 billion stolen in crypto hacks final 12 months, report says – CNN

Report $3.8 billion stolen in crypto hacks final 12 months, report says – CNN

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A report $3.8 billion price of cryptocurrency was stolen from numerous providers final 12 months, with a lot of these thefts pushed by North Korean-linked hackers, in keeping with a report Wednesday from blockchain analytics agency Chainalysis.

The rise in crypto heists, from $3.3 billion in 2021, got here as the general marketplace for cryptocurrencies suffered vital declines. The worth of Bitcoin, for instance, fell by greater than 60% final 12 months.

North Korea was a key driver for the surge in thefts, in keeping with the report. Hackers linked to the nation stole an estimated $1.7 billion price of crytopcurrency via numerous hacks in 2022, up from $429 million within the prior 12 months, Chainalysis mentioned.

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A number of the greatest crypto hacks of the 12 months have since been attributed to North Korea. The FBI has blamed hackers linked to the North Korean authorities for greater than $600 million hack of online game Axie Infinity’s Ronin network in March and a $100 million Harmony, a cryptocurrency agency, in June.

“North Korea’s whole exports in 2020 totalled $142 million price of products, so it isn’t a stretch to say that cryptocurrency hacking is a large chunk of the nation’s financial system,” Chainalysis famous within the report.

US officers fear Pyongyang will use cash stolen from crypto hacks to fund its illicit nuclear and ballistic weapons program. North Korean hackers have stolen the equal of billions of {dollars} lately by raiding cryptocurrency exchanges, in keeping with the United Nations.

Along with hacking cryptocurrency companies, suspected North Koreans have posed as different nationalities to use for work at such companies and ship a refund to Pyongyang, US companies have publicly warned.

Typically, decentralized finance (DeFi) protocols have been the principle goal of hackers, accounting for greater than 80% of all cryptocurrency stolen for the 12 months, in keeping with the report. These protocols are used to switch conventional monetary establishments with software program that enables customers to transact immediately with one another by way of the blockchain, the digital ledger that underpins cryptocurrencies.

Of the assaults on DeFi methods, 64% focused cross-chain bridge protocols, which permit customers to change property between totally different blockchains. Bridge providers sometimes maintain massive reserves of assorted cash, making them targets for hackers. (The thefts on Axie Infinity and Concord have been each bridge hacks.)

Whereas crypto hacks continued to rise final 12 months, there’s some trigger for hope. Legislation enforcement and nationwide safety companies are increasing their talents to fight digital criminals, such because the FBI’s recovery of $30 million price of cryptocurrency stolen within the Axie Infinity hack.

These efforts, mixed with different companies cracking down on cash laundering strategies, “implies that these hacks will get tougher and fewer fruitful with every passing 12 months,” in keeping with Chainalysis.

Further reporting from CNN’s Sean Lyngaas.

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