Earlier this August, cryptocurrency company Nomad suffered a cyber attack that cost $190 million. The company only stated on Twitter that it was “aware of the accident” and would investigate.
In fact, the information was provided by the company PeckShield, which researches cryptocurrencies.
Theft and developments
The theft that cost nearly $200 million worth of cryptocurrencies was targeted at so-called “bridges” produced by Nomad.
Nomad is a company that produces bridging software, which is responsible for interconnecting information between blockchains. Blockchain is a kind of ledger that legitimizes a cryptocurrency from the transactions that occur with it.
Thus, the connectivity of cryptocurrency information is what increases the reliability of the system as a whole. It is these bridges that make it possible for the information contained in a blockchain to be accessible to so many others.
In fact, bridges have been the target of theft for some time now. In 2022 alone, over $1 billion has already been stolen from blockchain bridges.
The company Nomad stated that it has security as one of its pillars, and that customer funds would not be affected by the theft. The same cryptocurrency research firm PeckShield stated that about $100 million would have been transferred to a “mixer”. The mixer hides the path taken by cryptocurrencies. The rest would be divided into a few wallets.
The authorities were called for knowledge and procedures applicable to the theft. Nomad hopes to recover the amounts through legal channels.
Major cryptocurrency heists
It is not the first time that hackers have carried out major heists in the cryptocurrency universe. In March of this year, nearly $600 million was stolen in tokens from the Ronin network.
This is a network that allows the transfer of cryptocurrencies between multiple blockchains.
This was one of the biggest heists in the cryptoverse. The theft totaled more than 27 million tokens.
Another grand theft happened in 2021 to the Poli Network, a company that promotes the transfer of Tokens. This case is quite significant as it demonstrates the vulnerability of cryptocurrency holders in the face of the desire to move away from the traditional system of banks and exchanges.
The network, innovative as it was, was not able to stop the theft or protect its customers. The damage was more than US$ 600 million dollars, but in this case the hackers returned almost all of the money from the theft.
Another three robberies of cryptocurrency networks reached more than $500 million each. One of the first in the history of cryptocurrencies was the Mt. Gox from Tokyo. The exchange concentrated more than 80% of operations at the time, and was the largest in the world between 2011 and 2014.
After the theft, the Exchange went bankrupt, and more than 24,000 customers lost access to their funds.
An amazing feature of the cryptocurrency world is that thefts can take place in any of the phases of the complex system that revolves around these markets. Thus, millionaire thefts do not only occur in cryptocurrencies, but also in tokens, virtual folders and, as happened in the case of Nomad, on bridges.
The young age of the system and the magnitude of the values involved make the technologies still relatively fragile. On the other hand, hackers get better every day with the certainty that the fruits of theft can be millionaires.
Still, the system develops little by little and even in the face of setbacks, investors continue to bet on cryptocurrencies as a promise to make a fortune in the future.