While the recent fake Bitcoin Giveway scam was made possible by massive hacking into Twitter accounts, there have been more enterprising hackers in the past. August 2016, the Bitfinex exchange suffered a hack which would cause it to lose nearly 120,000 BTC. The loot, which has still not been fully recovered, could also not be used by hackers, as the community was put on alert. We now learn that the pirates moved some of the stolen BTC after a long period of inactivity. The approach was certainly intended to be discreet, it was a failure.
A movement worth $ 38.7 million
The report of this movement was made on July 27 and 28 by a series of tweets which were posted by Whale Alert.
We learn that the wallet addresses attached to the pirate Bitfinex in 2016 have just completed a series of 12 transactions involving the stolen BTCs. The largest transaction of the lot was 476.32 BTC or approximately $ 5.2 million. The smallest of the transactions involved only 2,612,703 BTC, or less than $ 30,000. In total, this is 3503 BTC which was distributed over the 12 transactions made by pirates, either around 3% of the total stolen in 2016. All of these transactions thus represent worth $ 38.7 million.
An important jackpot that is difficult to launder
The inactivity of the BTC stolen during this hack which could be likened to a Hodling strategy has paid off when we are interested in the initial value of these. In August 2016, all of these BTCs were “only” worth $ 72 million compared to $ 1.3 billion currentlyt. However, another reason justifies the long silence of hackers in the cryptocurrency market. The lack of movement is mainly due to the difficulties they encountered – and in fact continue to meet – to discreetly launder stolen assets.
The existence of more and more strict regulations and the eyes on their addresses are the cause. In the past, previous transfers from these wallets ended up on the Russian darknet Hydra, others having even ended up coming back to Bitfinex, not without a certain irony. Nevertheless, the sudden presence ofsuch a large amount of bitcoin in the market could be problematic for the value of the asset. It will be objected, however, that the price of bitcoin was not particularly affected last May by the removal of 50 BTC from addresses (falsely) attributed to Satoshi Nakamoto. However, the fact that the funds set in motion this time around are equated to a hack could cause panic.
The move of the 3503 BTC split into different transactions suggests that hackers want to take advantage of the currently high transaction volumes to launder their loot. However, this task promises to be complicated to achieve as the affected addresses have been reported and are under increased surveillance.
In the crypto-bath since 2017, both far too late but far enough early from the point of view of my future grandchildren 🙂
Writer, Amateur trader, Ethereum and NEO-compatible