- Cryptocurrency investors in the 12 months of 2021 lost over N4.11 trillion in various scam and heist
- The cybercriminals perpetrated the crimes through creating various projects for investors to put their money
- Popular Neflix series Squid game was one of the projects pulled off by the cybercriminals to steal billions
Cybercriminals are now taking advantage of the ongoing craze around cryptocurrencies to trick potential victims and steal their digital money.
A new report titled “Crypto Hacks & Scams Report 2021” released by Crystal Blockchain shows that crypto investors in this year lost over $10 billion(N4.11 trillion) globally.
While another report from Chainalysis shows that the amount of money lost is over $7.7 billion worth of crypto currency worldwide.
How the crypto was lost
According to the Crystal database, 39% of all stolen assets (in Bitcoin or BTC) were dispersed through fraudulent exchanges, which are described as being involved in exit scams, unlawful behavior, or having had cash seized by the authorities.
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Exit scams entail a cryptocurrency benefitting from early investors by "removing" all of their cash from the market.
Another is called "rug pulls” a new type of scam where developers of a crypto currency project, typically a new token, abandon it unexpectedly, taking users’ funds with them.
According Chainalysis report nearly 90 per cent of all cryotoscams where done through rug pulls.
"The number of financial scams active at any point in the year rose by more than 60 per cent, from 2,052 in 2020 to 3,300 in 2021."
Here are some of the popular heist in 2021
In August 2021, hackers pulled off one of the biggest ever cryptocurrency heists stealing $613 million in digital coins from token-swapping platform Poly Network.
However, the hackers returned $260 million worth of tokens in less than 24 hours.
Flutterwave, five other Nigerian startup companies that struck the biggest deals in 2021 worth over N300bn
On May 19, the PancakeBunny hack took place, with the cybercriminals making off about $45 million.
Hackers stole $196 million from crypto trading platform Bitmart, the company called the attack “a large-scale security breach”
Hackers make off with $130 million in this October 2021. In February, hackers stole $37 million, and in August, $29 million.
Cybercriminals stole at least $120.3 million in cryptocurrency by hacking into decentralised finance (DeFi) protocol Badger DAO.
At least $31 million in cryptocurrency were stolen by hacking into multi-chain decentralised exchange MonoX. The attack was first identified on December 1.
Squid Game token
Millions of dollars vanished in a matter of minutes after investors piled into a new cryptocurrency inspired by “Squid Game,” the popular Netflix survival series, only to watch its value plunge to nearly zero in a few short hours.
Investors are in tears as over N3trn worth of bitcoin is wiped out
Can we just go back to using cowries? Basket expresses surprise all Naira notes together is less than $5
Meanwhile, investors of bitcoin saw over N1 trillion wiped off their investment as the cryptocurrency crashed within the last 24hours.
At its lowest on Saturday, one unit of Bitcoin sank below the $42,000 mark, losing as much as 22 percent, as per a Reuters report.
The fall comes amid Christmas risk-off taking a cue from the global stock markets, which remained volatile for the same reason