Bitcoin

Orbit Chain Hacker Moves $47.7 Million to Tornado Cash After Five Months of Inactivity

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TLDR

  • The Orbit Chain hacker, who stole around $100 million in ETH and DAI on New Year’s Eve, has moved $47.7 million to the cryptocurrency privacy mixer Tornado Cash after five months of inactivity.
  • The hacker’s current balance stands at $71.2 million, including $51.1 million in Ether and small amounts of other cryptocurrencies.
  • Orbit Chain confirmed the exploit on January 1, 2024, and offered an $8 million bounty for information leading to the attacker’s identification or the recovery of stolen assets.
  • The total value locked on Orbit Chain has dropped by over 75% since the hack, from $149.25 million to nearly $37 million.
  • Cryptocurrency thefts have increased by 42% in the first quarter of 2024 compared to the same period in 2023, with hackers stealing $542.7 million.

After months of silence following the theft of approximately $100 million in Ether (ETH) and DAI from Orbit Chain on New Year’s Eve, the hacker has resurfaced, moving a substantial portion of the stolen funds through the cryptocurrency privacy mixer Tornado Cash.

According to blockchain analytics firm Arkham Intelligence, the hacker transferred 12,932 ETH, worth $47.7 million, across seven transactions on June 8, 2024.

The funds were first sent to a new address before being channeled through Tornado Cash, a service known for obscuring the trail of cryptocurrency transactions.

This move has made it significantly more challenging for authorities to track the stolen funds and return them to their rightful owners.

The Orbit Chain hack occurred in the final hours of December 31, 2023, with the cross-chain bridge confirming the exploit the following day.

In response, Orbit Chain announced that it was actively engaging with international law enforcement agencies and offered an $8 million bounty for information leading to the attacker’s identification or the recovery of the stolen assets.

The hacker’s current balance stands at $71.2 million, consisting of $51.1 million in Ether and smaller amounts of wrapped Bitcoin (wBTC), wrapped Ether (wETH), Orbit Chain (ORC), and USD Coin (USDC).

Notably, the hacker has not moved the $20 million in DAI that was also stolen during the exploit.

The hack has had a significant impact on Orbit Chain, with the total value locked on the chain dropping by over 75% since the incident. Just hours before the exploit, the value locked on the protocol stood at $149.25 million; it has since fallen to nearly $37 million. The protocol’s peak value locked was $313 million in August 2022.

This incident highlights the growing concern of cryptocurrency thefts, which have increased by 42% in the first quarter of 2024 compared to the same period in 2023.

Hackers stole a staggering $542.7 million worth of cryptocurrencies during this time, emphasizing the need for enhanced security measures and regulatory oversight in the decentralized finance (DeFi) space.

As the hunt for the Orbit Chain hacker continues, the move to Tornado Cash has made the task of recovering the stolen funds significantly more complex.



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