Tech

Bored Ape Yacht Club Instagram, Discord Hacked, NFTs Worth $13.7 Million Stolen

The Instagram account and Discord server of popular NFT series Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) was recently compromised by hackers. At least 54 BAYC NFTs were stolen in this hack attack, the floor price of which reportedly comes close to $13.7 million (roughly Rs. 105 crore). Yuga Labs, the owner of BAYC, along with Instagram, has opened an investigation into the case. The exact number of NFTs stolen and the total amount of loss incurred by Yuga Labs in this phishing attack that was recognised on April 25, remains unclear as of now.

“The hacker posted a fraudulent link to a copycat of the Bored Ape Yacht Club website,” CoinDesk quoted a BAYC spokesperson as saying. Later, users were asked to “connect their MetaMask to the scammer’s wallet in order to participate in a fake airdrop.”

After identifying the breach, BAYC alerted its community and removed all links to Instagram from their platforms, as attempts to recover the hacked account picked pace.

The BAYC had also halted minting NFTs by users for the time being.

The victims of this attack, who clicked on the malicious airdrop link have been compromised. Stolen NFTs have been transferred into the wallet addresses of the hackers.

The BAYC NFT project is a collection of 10,000 algorithmically generated illustrations of cartoonised apes, all unique. Prices of BAYC NFTs had soared by over 25 percent in March.

The NFTs from this collection are popular among celebrities. In February, Justin Bieber purchased a new NFT from the Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) for $470,000 (roughly Rs. 3.5 crore). Paris Hilton, Jimmy Fallon, and Gwyneth Paltrow also hold BAYC NFTs.

Yuga Labs is trying to get in touch with the hackers to reach a settlement.

This is not the first hack attack targeting the blockchain sector, where millions were stolen.

Earlier in April, hackers stole $182 million (roughly Rs. 1,389 crore) from Beanstalk Farms, an Ethereum-based stablecoin protocol.

In March, Axie Infinity’s Ronin blockchain developed by Sky Mavis was exploited for $625 million (roughly Rs. 4,729 crore).

Given the constant hack threats looming over the crypto sector, many nations have begun mulling ways to protect their respective crypto communities.

Earlier this week, Kevin Thomas, a senator from New York has proposed to add crypto-related scams under the category of criminal offenses.

New rules have been passed in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), guaranteeing stringent punishments for crypto scammers targeting investors in the country.

These rules which came into effect on January 2, 2022, entail prison time for up to five years as well as a penalty up to AED 1 million (roughly Rs. 2 crore).

Last year, a report by Chainalysis claimed that crypto scams mooched off over $7.7 billion (roughly Rs. 58,697 crore) from investors. Out of this, rug pulls took in more than $2.8 billion (roughly Rs. 21,333 crore) worth of cryptocurrency from scam victims last year in 2021.


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