Poly Network Hacker Releases Private Key for Remaining Looted $141M

23 August 2021

The attacker who hacked more than $600 million from the China-based Poly Network platform has released the private key for the remaining $141 million of the stolen cryptocurrency.

  • In a note to the Poly Network team, the attacker or attackers referred to the saga as "one of the most wild adventures in our lives."
  • The note was posted to Twitter by Chinese reporter Colin Wu.
  • Poly Network subsequently tweeted its thanks to the attacker or attackers, posting a link to a transaction on the Ethereum blockchain confirming that the key worked.
  • The majority of the funds stolen in the Aug. 10 attack had already been recovered, but the hacker or hackers last week threatened to delay publishing the private key for the remainder.
  • In the note to Poly Network, the attacker or attackers described their reasoning behind the delay, citing desire to "unlock the USDT."
  • Tether, the developer of USDT, had frozen $33 million worth of the dollar-linked stablecoin that was looted in the attack.
  • "In my selfish view, the story is tainted by the locked USDT. It would have been a perfect example of building trust between anonymous 'adversaries' by leveraging the power of smart contract," the hacker or hackers wrote in the note.
  • The hack is considered the largest of its kind in decentralized finance (DeFi), highlighting the risks for investors and traders in the crypto sector.
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