Bounties as high as $10 million dollars make hunting cryptocurrency vulnerabilities lucrative for those with the proper skillsets. It might eventually drive up fees for traditional bounties, too.
As high-stakes cryptocurrency and blockchain projects proliferate and soar in value, it’s no surprise that malicious actors were enticed to steal $14 billion in cryptocurrency during 2021 alone. The frantic pace of cryptocurrency thefts is continuing into 2022.
In January, thieves stole $30 million in currency from Crypto.com and $80 million in cryptocurrency from Qubit Finance. February started with the second-largest decentralize finance (DeFi) theft to date when a hacker exploited a token exchange bridge in Wormhole to steal $320 million worth of Ethereum.
The largest cryptocurrency hack so far took place last August when blockchain interoperability project Poly Network suffered a hack that resulted in a loss of over $600 million. In an unusual move, Poly unsuccessfully attempted to publicly negotiate with the hacker a post-theft “bug bounty” of $500,000 in exchange for returning the $600 million, a bounty worth six times more than that typically offered in traditional cryptocurrency bug bounty programs.
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