Last night they robbed one of the best-known cryptocurrency exchanges and cybercriminals took around $ 200 million. Bitmart founder Sheldon Xia posted on Twitter that money had been extracted from two of its ” hot wallets ,” which are software that stores cryptocurrencies so that users can save and exchange their money. For that to be possible, they are always connected to the internet, which is why they are easier to hack.
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1/3 We have identified a large-scale security breach related to one of our ETH hot wallets and one of our BSC hot wallets. At this moment we are still concluding the possible methods used. The hackers were able to withdraw assets of the value of approximately USD 150 million.
– Sheldon Xia (@sheldonbitmart) December 5, 2021
According to Bitmart, the hackers stole $ 196 million , but cybersecurity company Peckshield, which was the first to report the theft, estimates that it is closer to $ 200 million. The company declined to comment on the difference in estimates.
After the robbery they suspended activities within the platform, no one could withdraw their money until further notice. In their report on Monday morning, they commented that at the end of their security control they saw that hackers were able to enter with a private key that they stole. This allowed access to two of its hot wallets that were based on Ethereum and Binance, but kept the rest of the assets intact.
Peckshield believes that after infiltrating using the key, the theft was very easy to do. The money was transferred first, then they used a decentralized exchange aggregator known as “1inch” to change the coins to ether, and finally they were fed into Tornado Cash, making it very difficult to track the money.
Bitmart also reported that it plans to compensate affected users with its own money. To keep them up to date, they will publish a schedule of the gradual payments that the company will make. Xia assures that they will start making payments on December 7.