Lazarus Group Suspected of $117 Million Poloniex Hack

Poloniex recently fell victim to a cyber attack, resulting in the loss of approximately $117 million. The blockchain analysis platform PeckShield brought the hack to light, which identified suspicious transactions leading to the massive financial breach.

Read more: Poloniex Exchange Lost $100 Million After Hack

Poloniex’s Troubled History

Established in 2014 as a centralized crypto exchange, Poloniex has faced security challenges. In 2014, the platform lost 12.3% of its Bitcoin funds in a previous hack. Notably, TRON founder Justin Sun acquired the exchange in 2019, aiming to revamp its security infrastructure.

PeckShield’s alert system notified both Poloniex and Justin Sun about the unusual transactions. A significant amount of various tokens, including Ethereum, Sandbox, Polygon, and more, were swiftly transferred to a new wallet. Cyvers Alerts estimates that the stolen funds were moved from Poloniex’s hot wallets, amounting to the staggering sum of $117 million.

Justin Sun’s Response

In response to the breach, Justin Sun took to Twitter, announcing an ongoing investigation into the incident. Despite the severity of the attack, Sun assured users that Poloniex maintains a healthy financial position and pledged full reimbursement for the affected funds. Additionally, Sun was willing to collaborate with other exchanges to facilitate the recovery process.

Poloniex, in a subsequent announcement, confirmed the implementation of a white hat bounty. The exchange provided the hacker with a seven-day ultimatum to cooperate or face the involvement of law enforcement. This move aims to encourage the responsible disclosure of vulnerabilities and recovery of stolen assets.

Lazarus Group Suspicions

Deddy Lavid, co-founder of PeckShield, raised suspicions about the Lazarus Group’s involvement. Known for sophisticated cyberattacks and substantial fund theft in recent months, the Lazarus Group is suspected of orchestrating this pre-planned, highly sophisticated attack. Analysis suggests a potential private key breach, with the attackers infiltrating the system months before executing the breach.

Remarkably, the native token of the TRON blockchain, TRX, experienced a 14% pump in value following the hack. This unexpected turn of events has left the crypto community puzzled and prompted speculations about potential connections between the hack and TRX’s sudden surge.

The Poloniex hack raises serious concerns about the security of centralized exchanges and highlights the need for continuous vigilance against increasingly sophisticated cyber threats. The suspicions surrounding the Lazarus Group add an additional layer of complexity to this unfortunate incident, emphasizing the challenges the crypto industry faces in maintaining robust cybersecurity measures.

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