In a shocking turn of events that has left the cryptocurrency world questioning the efficacy of existing security measures, a seasoned crypto investor lost an eye-watering $24.23 million in a phishing scam on September 6th. Known by their Ethereum address “0x13e382,” the investor, often called a “crypto whale,” had significant holdings capable of swaying market trends.
The investor’s loss comprised 4,851 rETH and 9,579 stETH, valued at approximately $8.58 million and $15.63 million, respectively. The Ethereum blockchain data indicates that the investor was duped into authorizing “increase Allowance” transactions, effectively giving the scammers access to their assets. Web3 security firm Scam Sniffer revealed that the investor had unintentionally granted token permissions to the fraudsters.
The stolen assets were transferred to two Ethereum addresses, “0x693b72” and “0x4c10a4,” previously associated with multiple phishing scams. Some stolen funds were moved to the Fixed Float exchange, while the rest was dispersed across three other locations.
This incident is particularly alarming given the investor’s extensive background in the blockchain sector, including a history of providing over $1.6 million in WBTC/USDT liquidity on Uniswap V3. The investor had also partnered with other major blockchain protocols like Aave, 1inch, Curve, OMG, and EOS. Despite their experience, the investor fell victim to the scam, raising questions about the vulnerabilities in Web3 security.
The investor’s identity remains confidential, but their oldest transaction dates back to June 2017 on Bitfinex.
This scam has intensified concerns about the rise of crypto phishing, especially on social media platforms like Twitter. Since the launch of Twitter’s Blue membership in November, there has been a marked increase in such scams. On-chain investigator ZackXBT has also recently warned about the growing number of phishing scams on social media, often disguised as verified businesses, making it even more challenging for users to identify fraudulent activities.