New York (CNN Business) In the summer, an unidentified hacker took about $600 million of cryptocurrency The source is Poly Network, a decentralized finance network that many outsides of the crypto community had never ever heard of. The hacker later returned the money.
After four months the hackers took at least $150 million from cryptocurrency exchange Bitmart. According to one report that was not able to be identified, hackers utilized a stolen key to create two “hot wallets” and to make money.
These kinds of security incidents are not new to the world of crypto, but the scale of these hacks is growing, because of the rise in prices for cryptocurrency in the last year, attracting greater attention from the media.
Five of the top 10 cryptocurrency thefts ever have occurred this year, according to statistics collected by the consumer website Comparitech . And these instances could continue because of the growing use of cryptocurrency according to experts in the field of financial technology.
Here’s the information you need to know about the current situation and how to ensure the security of your digital assets. Contact Algo affiliates to know more about this.
The two primary cyber-attacks that are currently affecting cryptos are decentralized exchanges as well as centralized financial (Defi) services According to Tom Robinson, the chief scientist at the London-based crypto compliance company Elliptic.
The centralized exchanges are the most frequent target of hackers for a number of years. Exchanges are used to store users’ funds in “hot wallets” which are digital wallets connected via the Internet. This allows them to be more accessible to users, however, they could also be more vulnerable to hacker attacks.
The most recent attack on BitMart was an instance. Another example is an attack on the Coincheck incident in the year 2018 that saw around $530 million taken, making it the biggest cryptocurrency heist ever — up to it was the Poly Network incident this year, based on Comparitech’s records.
Defi services are an emerging segment of the crypto market. Defi software applications eliminate exchanges altogether, as they run directly on blockchain platforms and attacks on these services tend to be due to programming mistakes or problems with the design of the apps, according to Robinson. Some of the most prominent examples are Poly Network as well as an earlier hack on Badger DAO, an application that provides users with vaults where they can keep bitcoin and earn a profit. The case of Badger DAO hack resulted in the loss of $120 million.
“What’s evident from the majority of the hacks this year, is there’s usually a security flaw that’s becoming exploited” claims Rebecca Moody director of security research for Comparitech. “With the growth of the market rapidly using open technology, it exposes platforms to attack in the event that hackers detect a flaw in the software.”
What do you stand the danger of losing?
If an exchange is affected by an attack, it doesn’t mean you’ll lose all of your money.
Every crypto-service has different levels of resources to guard against attacks. BitMart is an example. It guarantees to cover any stolen assets.
According to the crypto-crime researcher Joe McGill of TRM Labs If an organization is not able to compensate affected users, there’s the possibility that law enforcement such as for instance the IRS Criminal Investigations Cyber Unit could be able to find the money stolen.
But there’s no guarantee. While banks usually offer deposit insurance for an amount of money, however, there isn’t any guarantee when you hold cryptocurrency assets on a third-party service. Certain companies may offer insurance that covers damages, but the amount of protection — if any coverage at all is dependent on the platform.
If the cryptocurrency is stolen, it’s lost forever. “More frequently than not, criminals manage to get away with stolen funds because cryptocurrency is almost untraceable and can be disguised with the help of wallets that can be used to transfer it into just a few seconds,” Adam Morris, co-founder of Crypto Head, told CNN Business.
How can holders of cryptocurrency protect themselves?
If you are using a cryptocurrency when using a crypto wallet as well as an exchange platform, specialists suggest that customers must be aware of the size and credibility of the company behind it.
“Do they have employees who are responsible for cybersecurity? Does the company have a solid history? What is the size of the firm? What number of employees do they have? These are all signs that give you confidence that the business will protect all your possessions in a good manner,” says Robinson.
There are also security measures one can follow to access their crypto account. McGill recommends two-factor authentication or physical keys that are basically passwords that are stored on offline devices. McGill also suggests requiring approval for all withdrawals of crypto and also whitelisting addresses that will only allow certain addresses on your contacts list to be able to withdraw cryptocurrency funds in your bank account.
“There is no guarantee that you will be 100% successful in being safe from cybercrime,” McGill warns, but McGill said it’s important to be aware of the types of exchanges utilized, their past background with cybercrime as well as the systems for responding to cybercrime.
Another method to safeguard your crypto assets According to the advice of Morris the author is to utilize the physical wallet referred to as “cold storage” instead of placing it in a service. Although this is the most secure method to store crypto, this method places all the burden on the user who is responsible for the storage of personal keys. If those keys become lost or stolen or lost, the user is responsible for their loss. or stolen, there is no other financial entity that can provide support.