To make sure you never miss out on your favourite NEW stories, we're happy to send you some reminders

Click 'OK' then 'Allow' to enable notifications

Hackers Stole Nearly $600 Million From Play-To-Earn Game

Hackers Stole Nearly $600 Million From Play-To-Earn Game

The intruders were able to exploit vulnerabilities in the game's network

Digital hackers managed to steal a staggering 173,600 Ethereum - the equivalent of £450 million - from a 'play-to-earn' video game.

As Vice first reported, the popular 'Axie Infinity' game was targeted by the technically proficient hackers, who are thought to have exploited a backdoor security work-around in order to access the funds.

The premise of Axie Infinity is very simple: players receive cryptocurrency in exchange for playing in the first place, and stumping up any starter costs. The middle man between the game and the crypto is the Ronin network, a blockchain launched last year to try and reduce fees associated with using Ethereum.

It had been successful too, as it provided players with 100 free transactions per day, per user.

While criminality is all too pervasive in the world of crypto, given the relative anonymity one maintains for some transactions, a heist of this nature is unprecedented.

The value of Bitcoin has collapsed in a matter of months (PA Images)
The value of Bitcoin has collapsed in a matter of months (PA Images)

The cybercriminals involved are alleged to have exploited a backdoor in a Remote Procedure Call node from Axie's creator firm, Sky Mavis, to get a signature - letting them 'forge fake withdrawals' using compromised private keys.

Mavis has put the breach down to a flaw on a holdover from last autumn. The hackers were able to hoover up large quantities of Ethereum and USDC cryptocurrencies after managing to successfully compromise Ronin network nodes.

The extent of the theft was only uncovered on Tuesday, although it is thought to have begun one week earlier.

In a statement released on Tuesday, Sky Mavis claimed it is now working with law enforcement to recover the stolen Ethereum and USDC cryptocurrencies from hackers. “We are working with law enforcement officials, forensic cryptographers, and our investors to make sure there is no loss of user funds. This is our top priority right now,” it reads.

"As of right now users are unable to withdraw or deposit funds to Ronin Network. Sky Mavis is committed to ensuring that all of the drained funds are recovered or reimbursed.

“We know trust needs to be earned and we are using every resource at our disposal to deploy the most sophisticated security measures and processes to prevent future attacks.”

If you have a story you want to tell, send it to UNILAD via [email protected]  

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Cryptocurrency