Home Business Hackers Leverage Crypto Platform RenBridge to Launder $540 Million: Reports

Hackers Leverage Crypto Platform RenBridge to Launder $540 Million: Reports

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Hackers Leverage Crypto Platform RenBridge to Launder $540 Million: Reports

More than half a billion dollars have been laundered in crypto assets from theft, fraud, ransomware, and various other types of criminal activity since 2020, a new report has revealed.

Blockchain analyst group Elliptic’s report indicates that one cross-chain bridge in particular – RenBridge – has been used to launder at least $540 million in crypto assets from hackers and fraudsters.

Cross-chain bridges allow crypto assets to be transferred between blockchains, without going through a centralized service such as a crypto exchange.

Billions of dollars of assets have been transferred between Bitcoin, Ethereum and other blockchains – using bridge services such as Portal, cBridge and Synapse.

“RenBridge has become particularly popular with those seeking to launder the proceeds of theft,” the report states.

Stolen crypto assets from exchanges and decentralized finance (DeFi) services worth at least $267.2 million have been laundered through RenBridge in the past two years.

This includes $33.8 million stolen from Japanese crypto exchange Liquid in August 2021. A total of $97 million was stolen from Liquid, in an attack linked to North Korea, according to the report.

Sometimes these stolen funds come from other cross-chain bridges.

“Just a few days ago, $156 million was stolen from the Nomad Bridge following the discovery of a bug that was exploited by multiple individuals,” the team said.

A few hours later, some of the thieves were sending the stolen funds through RenBridge.

So far, $2.4 million in crypto assets stolen from Nomad have been sent through RenBridge.

“RenBridge is also a significant enabler for Russia-linked ransomware gangs, with over $153 million in ransom payments laundered through the service to date,” the report notes.

Blockchain bridges such as RenBridge pose a challenge for regulators because there is no central service provider that facilitates these cross-chain transactions.

Instead, transactions are processed by a network of thousands of pseudonymous validators known as “Darknodes”.

–IANS

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(Only the title and image of this report may have been edited by Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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