It’s happened again, folks. Another crypto exchange hack is in the books. This time, the victimized platform is a company called Harmony in California.
Harmony Is the Latest Crypto Exchange to Be Hacked
Cybercriminals have allegedly made off with more than $100 million in digital currency from a division of the firm known as Horizon, which operates as a blockchain bridge of sorts. A blockchain bridge is a tool that links several blockchains to one another, ensuring that traders can always transact and invest regardless of the wallets or digital units in question.
Harmony has said that it discovered the theft a few weeks ago and that it was working hard to understand what happened. The company has called in the expertise of forensic specialists and law enforcement to see about tracking down the responsible parties.
Harmony issued the following tweet:
The team is all hands-on deck as investigations continue. We will keep everyone up to date as we investigate this further and obtain more information.
Crypto theft has long become synonymous with the space. There are many that argue some form of regulation is needed to ensure incidents like these never happen again, though there are plenty of people objecting to this idea given that crypto is designed to be fully decentralized and give people full autonomy and independence when it comes to their monetary futures. Thus, crypto regulation, while still an active topic of conversation, has taken a while to amount to anything solid.
Past incidents to have made a serious mark on the crypto space include both Mt. Gox and Coincheck, both of which occurred roughly four years apart in Japan in 2014 and 2018, respectively. Mt. Gox was a (now defunct) crypto exchange run by a French businessman named Mark Karpeles, whose involvement in the alleged thievery is still not fully understood.
Mt. Gox ultimately lost about $400 million in BTC funds overnight, and very few of those funds have ever been recovered. Four years later, Coincheck outdid this little feat by losing more than half a billion dollars in assorted crypto funds, thus bringing the loss totals for both exchanges to about $1 billion.
The event caused the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in Japan to get involved and begin taking over crypto firms that were either unregulated or did not follow present monetary standards.
Lazarus Is an Illicit Player
This year alone, there have been several attacks on crypto platforms allegedly initiated by organizations such as Lazarus in North Korea. One of the biggest examples came in the form of Axie Infinity, a digital currency gaming platform that ultimately saw more than $600 million in digital currency funds vanish into thin air.
It also doesn’t help that the crypto space is stuck in the biggest rut of its 13-year existence, with the industry recently having lost more than $2 trillion in market value.