Due to the anonymity cryptocurrencies provide, the crypto industry is known to be targeted by hackers and other malicious players. This has left many wondering just how much digital currency has been mined right under the industry’s nose over the years.
Now, the latest report by blockchain security firm SlowMist seems to have the answer. According to the recently released reporthackers and scammers have made off with a staggering $30 billion in cryptocurrency since 2012.
The SlowMist team analyzed 1,101 hacking incidents to find out how much crypto has been stolen so far and how it was stolen. Their findings show that hackers and scammers use a variety of methods, with the main ones being contract vulnerability attacks, carpet pulling, flash loan attacks, scams, leak private keys, and good old phishing attacks to access people’s crypto accounts and wallets. .
The most lucrative year for malicious players came in 2021 during the extended crypto hype, with over $9.7 billion stolen in 236 attacks.
In total, the amount stolen in the last decade came to a little over $30 billion. And given that the total market cap of all cryptocurrencies is now $1.14 trillion, the amount reported stolen is more than 2.5% of the total market cap.
Over $30 billion stolen in 10 years | Source: SlowMist
Exchanges And Ethereum Ecosystem Are The Most Hit
Exchanges have always been a prime target for hackers looking to steal crypto because of their large holdings and SlowMist’s report reflects that.
In total, more than 118 attacks were carried out on exchanges, resulting in more than $10.9 billion being lost. The largest of these can be traced back to the $534 million lost in the 2018 Japanese exchange Coincheck hack and the 2014 Mt. Gov hack that resulted in the loss of over $473 million.
Total market cap chart sitting at $1.139 trillion | Source: Crypto Total Market Cap on TradingView.com
In terms of attacks on the blockchain ecosystem, Ethereum leads with 217 attacks and over $3.1 billion stolen. This is not surprising, since Ethereum is home to most Web3 projects.
The BSC and EOS ecosystems followed closely with 162 and 119 attacks, respectively. Additionally, over $200 million was lost to NFT attacks, while bridge attacks led to $2 billion in losses.
What’s Next For The Crypto Industry?
The staggering numbers in the SlowMist report are a reminder that crypto, for all its promise, also has a dark side. However, the attacks seem to be slowing down as more projects are starting to improve their security. With more than a trillion dollars at stake, reducing theft requires a concerted effort across the crypto landscape.
According to the latest report by Beosin, a blockchain security firm, losses from Web3 scams and hacks decreased significantly in H1 2023. Data from the SlowMist report also shows that the total amount of money lost to blockchain hackers has been decreasing since 2021.
Featured image from ETF Trends, chart from TradingView.com