NFT Heist: Trader Faces Largest Cybersecurity Breach in History

The burgeoning Non-Fungible Token (NFT) market has been thrust into chaos as NFT Trader, a prominent peer-to-peer trading platform, fell victim to the largest NFT hack to date. Millions of dollars’ worth of high-value NFTs, including rare Bored Ape and Mutant Ape Yacht Club tokens, VeeFriends, Art Blocks, and World of Women NFTs, were pilfered in an elaborate cyber attack.

The digital heist, shrouded in mystery, began when an X user issued a red alert, prompting users who had engaged in trades on NFT Trader to revoke approval to their contracts with specific compromised addresses. The hacker targeted at least 13 Mutant Ape Yacht Club and 37 Bored Ape tokens, resulting in losses approaching $3 million.

Scale of the Theft and Targeted Approach

The sheer scale of this unprecedented digital heist has sent shockwaves through the NFT community, with some of the most valuable apes, each worth over $300,000, now in the hands of the mysterious assailant. The hacker appears to have honed in on individuals who had used NFT Trader in the past, exploiting vulnerabilities in the old smart contracts of the platform.

Timeline of the Heist and Hacker’s Demands

The hacker initiated the assault approximately four hours before reports surfaced, swiftly draining valuable NFTs to specific addresses. In a surprising twist, the hacker, identified as 0x3dc115307c7b79e9ff0afe4c1a0796c22e366a47b47ed2d82194bcd59bb4bd46, emerged with an unconventional proposition – a demand for a bounty in exchange for the safe return of the stolen digital assets.

Users now face a moral quandary: whether to entertain the hacker’s demands and regain ownership of their cherished NFTs or stand firm against supporting criminal activities. Unexpectedly, the hacker has begun returning some NFTs for free, challenging assumptions about their motivations. This unpredictable move adds a layer of uncertainty to the ongoing saga.

BAYC Founder’s Intervention

In an unexpected twist, Garga, the founder of Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC), has offered to pay the 10% ETH bounty demanded by the hacker to facilitate the return of the stolen BAYC apes. While this gesture aims to alleviate the impact on affected users, concerns are raised about the potential message it sends to cyber attackers regarding the profitability of exploiting vulnerabilities.

One of the victims said the hacker returned a rare NFT along with 31 ETH, worth nearly $70,680: “And now the hacker just sent me 31 eth? What in the world is going on. Is this real life?,” the victim said.

NFT Trader has confirmed the cyber attack on its old smart contracts, urging users to take swift action by removing delegation to the compromised addresses. This precautionary step is crucial to prevent further unauthorized access and exploitation of NFTs associated with these addresses.

Information for this story was found via Cryptoticker, Cointelegraph, The Block, and the sources mentioned. The author has no securities or affiliations related to the organizations discussed. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.

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