OpenSea claims that its hack was never a hack, users fell for phishing scams

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OpenSea claims that its hack was never a hack, users fell for phishing scams
Representative imageOpenSea
  • Early rumours indicated that NFTs worth more than $200 million had been stolen from the world’s largest NFT marketplace, OpenSea.
  • According to the company, only $1.7 million worth of Ether has been stolen.
  • OpenSea is still conducting an investigation into the incident.
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OpenSea was hacked, and then it wasn’t.

Early on Saturday, a hacker or a group of hackers stole millions in non-fungible tokens ( NFTs) from OpenSea users, sending the crypto and NFT community in a tizzy.

The world’s largest NFT platform has since denied the rumours of a hack, which some said led to $200 million worth of NFTs being stolen from users. Instead, it turns out that the attacker stole $1.7 million worth of Ether, according to Devin Finzer, co-founder and chief executive of OpenSea.

In a series of tweets, Finzer said that the company is conducting an in-depth investigation into the incident. "As far as we can tell, this is a phishing attack. We don’t believe it’s connected to the OpenSea website. It appears 32 users thus far have signed a malicious payload from an attacker, and some of their NFTs were stolen,” Finzer said.

Finzer said that the hackers used a phishing attack on the victims, which should mean that they sent malicious emails to the users, which were used to steal their passwords or other personal details.

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The incident could also be similar to what happened to Todd Kramer, a gallery owner, who said that he had lost 15 NFTs, worth $2.2 million, from his Ethereum wallet through a phishing scam. That hack included four Bored Ape Yacht Club NFTs among others.

The significance of the OpenSea hack


At a valuation of over $13 billion, OpenSea is often called the largest NFT marketplace in the world. The company claims it has over a million active user wallets. Blockchain tracking platform DappRadar shows that the platform has conducted $21.8 billion in lifetime trades, which is about $5 billion more than the second largest platform — LooksRare.

The incident at OpenSea also highlights a growing wave of crypto crimes that has been recorded by many in the industry. In fact, a report by Chainalysis from earlier this month noted that illicit wallets had amassed over $11 billion in crypto over 2021 alone.

Phishing attacks are amongst the most common means used by cybercriminals to steal crypto and NFTs. The Chainalysis also noted that NFT rug pulls, where hackers create hype over a project to raise prices only to abandon it later, have also grown over the past year or so.

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