The Top 10 Cryptocurrency Hacks Of All Time

Cyberscope Team
June 18, 2022
Cryptocurrency Hacking
The Top 10 Cryptocurrency Hacks Of All Time

The cryptocurrency industry is one of the most volatile ones, with a significant amount of scams and hacks occurring in recent years. Due to these hacks and exchange losses, we’ve compiled a list of the top 10 cryptocurrency hacks of all time. This should give you some food for thought when buying cryptocurrencies or selecting which exchanges to use while also helping you avoid getting caught out by future attacks.

Top 10 Cryptocurrency Hacks Graph
Top 10 Cryptocurrency Hacks Graph

1. Ronin Network (2022) — $614M

On March 23rd, Ronin, an Ethereum sidechain built for the popular play-to-earn game Axie Infinity, was hacked for over 173,600 ETH and 25.5M USDC for a combined value of over $600 million. The security breach on the Ronin bridge was confirmed by Sky Mavis, the development company behind the popular play-to-earn (P2E) game.

“This was a social engineering attack combined with human error from December 2021. Sky Mavis tech is solid and we will be adding several new validators to the Ronin Network shortly to further decentralize the network,” said Axie Infinity co-founder and chief operating officer Aleksander Leonard Larsen.

Read more about the hack here.

2. Poly Network (2021) — $611M

Poly Network, a platform in the decentralized finance or “DeFi” space, was hit by a major attack in August 2021 which saw the hacker, steal more than $600 million worth of digital tokens. The thief exploited a vulnerability in Poly Network’s code which allowed them to transfer the funds to their own accounts.

The story ends with a strange twist as the Poly Network kept the communication open with the hacker and managed to retrieve all the funds. “My actions, which may be considered weird, are my efforts to contribute to the security of the Poly project in my personal style,” the hacker said.

Read more about the story here.

3. Coincheck (2018) — $547M

In January 2018 hackers broke into a cryptocurrency exchange called Coincheck Inc. and made off with nearly $500 million in digital tokens. The exchange hasn’t disclosed how their system was breached apart from saying that it wasn’t an inside job.

Read more about the hack here.

4. Mt. Gox (2014) — $480M

In February 2014, Mt. Gox took a devastating hit with a considerable bitcoin hack. Hackers managed to access and steal 740,000 bitcoin from the exchange’s customers and 100,000 from the company itself, roughly the equivalent of $480 million at the time.

The hack quickly spun out of control and the company ended up bankrupt by the end of February 2014.

Read more about the hack here.

5. Wormhole (2022) — $326M

DeFi platform Wormhole became the victim of a cryptocurrency theft in February this year when an attacker exploited a security flaw to make off with close to $326 million.

The attack seems to have resulted from a recent update to the project’s GitHub repository, which revealed a fix to a bug that had not yet been deployed to the project itself.

Read more about the hack here.

6. KuCoin (2020) — $285M

On September 25, 2020, hackers stole more than $275 million worth of cryptocurrency from the KuCoin exchange. However, immediately after the hacking was reported, Kucoin began working with various players in the crypto industry. This cooperation ultimately led to the recovery of a large chunk of the stolen funds.

Read more about the hack here.

7. PancakeBunny (2021) — $200M

In May 2021, the popular Binance Smart Chain-based decentralized finance protocol PancakeBunny suffered a major exploit that allowed a hacker to make off with more than $200 million worth of crypto assets. According to a series of Twitter threads posted by the PancakeBunny team after the attack, the protocol was subject to a flash loan exploit from an external actor.

Read more about the hack here.

8. BitMart (2021) — $196M

In December 2021, Crypto trading platform Bitmart experienced “a large-scale security breach” that led hackers to withdraw about $196 million in cryptocurrency assets.

Read more about the hack here.

9. Beanstalk (2022) — $182M

In April 2022, Beanstalk, an Ethereum-based stablecoin protocol, was the victim of an attack targeting its governance protocol. The attacker stole $181 million from the project but only profited $76 million of the stolen assets.

Read more about the hack here.

10. BitGrail (2018) — $170M

In February 2018, the Italian coin exchange BitGrail posted a notice to users informing them that hackers had made off with 17 million units of Nano (XRB), the coin formerly known as RaiBlocks. With the value of Nano then around $10, BitGrail noted losses of around $170 million.

Read more about the hack here.

Conclusion

There are plenty of tales of hacking in the cryptocurrency world and most of them happened in the very recent past. These range from simple scams to complex code exploits of large exchanges that are investing millions in cyber security. It seems like news of a hack or scam is released at least once every two weeks. And while most cryptocurrency users are careful and take data safety seriously, not everyone is so diligent. If you do choose to invest in a cryptocurrency project make sure that the smart contract is audited by a reputable company like Cyberscope and always DYOR.

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2022,
CRYPTOCURRENCY HACKING
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