Poly Network hacker returns over $260 million after DeFi heist


An address linked with the infamous hacker of decentralized finance (DeFi) cross-chain bridging protocol, Poly Network, has returned over $260 million stolen from the network. 

$260 million (As of 11 Aug 04:18:39 PM +UTC) of assets had been returned:
Ethereum: $3.3M
BSC: $256M
Polygon: $1M

The remainings are $269M on Ethereum, $84M on Polygon

— Poly Network (@PolyNetwork2) August 11, 2021

The return of the funds, scattered across three blockchains, started following threats by Polygon network that it would take serious legal action. 

Poly Network hacker returning stolen funds

Data from Polygonscan indicated that the polygon address used by the hacker first dropped $10,000 in USDC to a wallet set up by Poly Network at 8:46 UTC on Wednesday. It then sent another $1 million fifteen minutes later. 

Later on, the hacker dropped another $1.1 million in BTCB on Binance Smart Chain at 9:49 UTC.

Earlier on Wednesday, before the return of the stolen funds began, the hacker embedded a message in a transaction with themselves to inform the world that they were ready to return the funds but could not get in touch with Poly Network. In the encrypted message, the hacker also demanded multisignature wallets.

Later on, it released another encrypted message embedded within a transaction. “Accept donations to hidden signer now. Encrypt your msg with his pubkey,” the encrypted message read.

Poly network, other take actions

When the hack, which some analysts described as a historical heist, occurred the combined value of stolen crypto was suspected to be around $600 million on three blockchains, totaling roughly $273M on Ethereum, approximately $253M on Binance Smart Chain, and close to $85M on Polygon. 

However, further details revealed that the stolen funds were south of $200 million because after the healer came to an end, less than $400 million was left in the network’s account. 

Following the attack, Tether, the world’s largest stablecoin, froze roughly $33 million in USDT associated with the alleged hacker’s wallet address, which led to ideological remarks on Twitter, questioning how decentralized is the DeFi corner of the space.

Meanwhile, some of the biggest crypto exchange operators spoke out, offering their help and support, including Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao, Huobi co-founder Du Jun and OKEx CEO Jay Hao.

While centralized exchanges also reacted showing support to the hacked protocol, blockchain security intelligence keeps trying to define the exploited vulnerability by retracing the attackers steps

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