According to recent data, the first half of the year saw cryptocurrency hackers steal a whopping $2 billion in digital assets that were divided into various tokens. The Ethereum ecosystem was the primary target of these criminals, especially the decentralized finance (DeFi) applications. While blockchain remains a secure technology, it is the loopholes in smart contracts’ programming that are usually exploited, as these depend on people.
While there are some decentralized finance (DeFi) applications, called Dapps, that boast high-security standards, the same cannot be said for all.
DeFi projects primary target
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According to statistics, crypto hackers managed to extract about $1.97 billion from different DeFi projects in just a period of six months. This figure is colossal because it is the TVL of the entire decentralized finance ecosystem in the first six months of 2020. A total of 32 attacks were launched on the Ethereum ecosystem and 50% of the $1.97 billion was stolen in these attacks.
The Ronin protocol took the hardest hit in the Ethereum ecosystem, which is used for running the popular game Axie Infinity. The play-to-earn app suffered a breach that resulted in losses of about $625 million, which was stolen in the form of ether (ETH) and the USDC stablecoin.
The next target of crypto hackers was Solana. The scalability power of the blockchain had gained a lot of popularity because it is capable of processing more than 50,000 transactions in a second. The first half of the year saw Solana suffer from 5 attacks. While they were less than the number of attacks on Ethereum, they were undoubtedly more painful.
The hackers stole a massive $383.9 million in tokens and digital coins in these five attacks alone, the largest of which was on the Wormhole bridge platform. This one occurred in early February when hackers stole $325 million and left the entire community of Solana in utter shock. It became the second largest theft in the history of DeFi.
The Poly Network had been the biggest hack before it, which had occurred in August 2021 and $600 million were stolen. The hackers had returned the funds in this scenario and the management had given a reward.
There are other ecosystems that have also been targeted by hackers, with the third position claimed by the BNB chain, which belongs to the Binance exchange. There were 47 attacks that took place in this ecosystem in six months and the attackers walked away with $141.4 million.
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The non-fungible token (NFT) platforms were the most prominent ones in this list. A total of 45 vulnerabilities were identified, which cost about $84.6 million. Centralized exchanges (CEX) were also a target and hackers stole about $35.8 million from them in a total of 4 attacks.
May turned out to be the worst month for the decentralized finance (DeFi) space, as a total of 37 attacks were carried out. Crema Finance was the latest DeFi protocol to suffer, which is based on the Solana blockchain.