Binance and Huobi join forces to retrieve $2.5 million from Harmony One hackers
The security teams at Binance and Huobi collaborated to recover 121 Bitcoin (BTC) from hackers who had exploited the Harmony bridge. The hackers attempted to launder the funds through Huobi, but their actions were detected by Binance. Binance then contacted Huobi and helped them freeze and retrieve the stolen digital assets. This was announced by Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao in a tweet.
We detected Harmony One hacker fund movement. They previously tried to launder through Binance and we froze his accounts. This time he used Huobi. We assisted Huobi team to freeze his accounts. Together, 124 BTC have been recovered. CeFi helping to keep DeFi #SAFU! 🙏
— CZ 🔶 Binance (@cz_binance) January 16, 2023
The tweet by CZ was retweeted by Justin Sun, the Founder of Huobi Global. Corroborating Binance’s CEO statement, Justin shared a tweet as can be seen below
We’re proud to announce that thanks to our dedicated team and collaboration with @binance, we were able to detect and prevent a Harmony One hacker from attempting to launder funds through @HuobiGlobal. https://t.co/7D2MSo8TEX
— H.E. Justin Sun🌞🇬🇩🇩🇲🔥₮ (@justinsuntron) January 16, 2023
As per Zhao, the exchanges managed to recover a total of 124 BTC, which is a tad bit above $2.5 million at the time of writing this article.
According to a crypto investigator, the hackers who successfully exploited the Harmony bridge transferred the funds and consolidated them on three different crypto exchanges, though the specific exchanges were not named. On June 24th, the Harmony team discovered the exploit and reported that $100 million in funds had been compromised. This hack brought attention to concerns previously raised by community members about the multisigs securing the Horizon bridge.
On June 30th, the Lazarus Group, a well-known North Korean hacking organization, was identified as a suspect in the $100 million Harmony hack. Blockchain analysis firm Elliptic stated that the method used in the hack was similar to other Lazarus Group attacks. The Horizon bridge hack is considered one of the largest exploits and hacks of 2022. Analysts believe that the Lazarus Group targeted employee login credentials to gain access and breached Harmony’s security system, then used laundering programs to move the stolen assets.
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