Over $15 Million Stolen In a Massive Crypto.com Hack
On January 17th, the massively popular cryptocurrency platform Crypto.com announced that all cryptocurrency withdrawals have been suspended due to suspicious and unauthorized activities. Initial reports talked about hackers who stole 4,600 ETH worth over $15 million from the platform, although according to the official estimates over twice as much could have been stolen.
Crypto.com has become a commonly known brand over the past couple months due to an impressive marketing campaign. In December last year, Crypto.com announced that it will spend $700 million over a period of 20 years to acquire naming rights to the legendary Staples Center in Los Angeles in order to rename it to Crypto.com Arena.
Soon after that, an exciting Crypto.com ad featuring Matt Damon began to be aired in hundreds of millions of homes around the world. However, all of the efforts to turn Crypto.com into a household name might soon be undone by the recent security breach which seems to have been very serious according to the initial reports.
On Monday morning, the official Crypto.com Twitter account has posted a brief announcement:
“We have a small number of users reporting suspicious activity on their accounts. We will be pausing withdrawals shortly, as our team is investigating. All funds are safe.”
The Tweet didn’t mention any details, and the situation didn’t seem serious at first. However, numerous Crypto.com users started to tweet that their funds have been stolen from their wallets — in all cases, the missing cryptocurrency was Ethereum (ETH).
The Dogecoin (DOGE) founder Billy Markus has noticed suspicious on-chain activity in the ETH addresses belonging to Crypto.com, alleging that “hackers are taking funds from Crypto.com’s hot wallet”.
Initial reports claimed that the hackers stole 4,600 ETH worth over $15 million. However, some on-chain analysts pointed out that the total amount of cryptocurrency stolen was closer to $33 million, since the stolen assets presumably included 444 BTC worth over $18 million — the second, much larger estimate was recently confirmed by Crypto.com.
Crypto.com claims that it has already enhanced the security of all accounts, and that all of the users’ funds are safe, although it might take some time for the missing crypto to appear in people’s wallets again. In other words, Crypto.com decided to promptly reimburse the people who fell victim to the hackers.
According to recent reports, 8 people in China have already been arrested in relation to the Crypto.com hack. Aside from the amount of cryptocurrency stolen and the fact that hundreds of users could have been affected, no other details of the hack have been disclosed yet. But the situation has certainly highlighted a well-known fact — that security should always be the top priority of all cryptocurrency-related enterprises.