- In September, cryptocurrency theft via hacks and scams reached over $320 million, making it the highest monthly loss in 2022.
- The $200 million breach of Mixin Network on September 23rd was the biggest contributor to these losses.
- Other major exploits included $53 million stolen from CoinEx and $41 million from Stake.com.
September saw more cryptocurrency stolen through exploits, hacks and scams than any other month this year, topping $320 million in losses, according to data from CertiK. The surge pushes 2022’s total crypto losses from various cybercrimes over $1.3 billion.
CertiK identified the biggest contributor as the $200 million breach of cross-chain protocol Mixin Network on September 23rd. Hong Kong-based Mixin lost funds after its cloud service provider was compromised.
Other major September exploits included $53 million stolen from exchange CoinEx and $41 million from gambling platform Stake.com. The North Korean state-sponsored hacking group Lazarus has been blamed for both attacks.
Phishing scams, flash loan attacks, and exit scams added tens of millions more to crypto losses last month. The wave of thefts swells the yearly total taken by hackers and scammers to nearly $1 billion.
July previously held the unfortunate record for 2022’s most lucrative month for criminals, with over $285 million stolen at the time. But September’s relentless hacks and frauds firmly outpaced it.
Q3 accounts for one of the largest losses to various crimes
The final quarter also got off to an inauspicious start, with blockchain security firm Beosin reporting nearly $900 million lost to various crimes in Q3 alone. That exceeds the combined total stolen in the first half of 2022.
The spike in exploits follows evolving hacking tactics and increasing sophistication in targeting vulnerabilities. Lazarus and other state-sponsored groups present severe threats given their resources and technical prowess.
Meanwhile, scammers continue duping victims through social engineering and phishing, despite widespread education efforts. The persistence of successful schemes reflects the learning curve around managing crypto securely.
While trackers can tally the totals, the human cost of ruined lives and livelihoods from thefts cannot be quantified. The victims range from individuals to institutions that saw their holdings vanish overnight.
The sobering data underscores the harsh reality that criminals specializing in stealthily exploiting crypto’s edges remain a formidable force. For an industry aspiring toward mainstream finance, reducing the systematic risks of fraud and theft remains an urgent priority.