Hackers Stole More Than $21,000,000 From Decentralized Finance Platforms Last Month, According to DeFi Llama
Crypto hackers stole $21.41 million worth of digital assets from decentralized finance (DeFi) platforms in February, according to DeFi Llama.
DeFi Llama, a total value locked (TVL) aggregator, notes that the exploited value in February was a steep increase from January, which only witnessed about $740,000 in hacks.
Still, February’s $21.41 million total is just a drop in the bucket compared to the amount of crypto that was stolen across 2022. The market intelligence firm Chainalysis notes in its 2023 Crypto Crime Report that hackers stole $3.8 billion from cryptocurrency businesses last year, the highest annual total ever.
October 2022, in particular, was the biggest single month ever for crypto hacking, with $775.7 million in digital assets stolen across 32 separate attacks.
Chainalysis also notes that DeFi protocols have become the biggest targets for hacking in the crypto space, with $3.1 billion in hacks last year, more than 82% of the total amount stolen in 2022. Cross-chain bridges are the biggest specific targets within DeFi, accounting for 64% of that $3.1 billion total.
Cross-chain bridges are designed to functionally enable transfers of crypto assets between two different chains.
“Bridges are an attractive target for hackers because the smart contracts in effect become huge, centralized repositories of funds backing the assets that have been bridged to the new chain – a more desirable honeypot could scarcely be imagined. If a bridge gets big enough, any error in its underlying smart contract code or other potential weak spot is almost sure to eventually be found and exploited by bad actors.”
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