Story image

Hacker steals US$440K in 'easily avoidable' digital currency breach

26 Jan 18

News recently emerged of another digital currency breach where a hacker hijacked Black Wallet to steal around $440,000 from Bitcoin rival Stellar Lumen.

According to reports, the DNS server of Black Wallet was hacked and manipulated so that whenever a user logged into the web-based wallet, the injected code redirects the Stellar Lumens coins (provided more than 20 are held) into another.

The Black Wallet team sent out warnings and alert messages to all the users of Stellar Lumens coins via the Stellar Community, Reddit, GitHub, Twitter, and Galactic Talk.

After following the trail of the hacker, the Stellar community deemed the hacker moved the coins to the Bittrex exchange where the assumed motive of the hacker is exchange the coins and bury the tracks.

This attack comes on the heels of a series of social engineering attacks aimed at the ever-growing and burgeoning crypto-market. For example Exchange EtherDelta suffered a very similar attack late last year where the attacker was reported to gain around $250,000 worth of digital currency.

High Tech Bridge CEO Ilia Kolochenko says these attacks will continue in both frequency and magnitude unless changes are made – and they’re really quite simple.

“Unfortunately, startups in digital currencies and other blockchain technologies often ignore or underestimate information security and privacy fundamentals,” says Kolochenko.

“They operate on a very competitive and extremely fluctuative market, and just don’t have enough resources and time to take care of cybersecurity. “

Kolochenko says it’s this competitive and young market that is causing the fundamental issues.

“Changes and updates go into production every hour, without the necessary security validation and testing of new code,” Kolochenko says.

“Competition is always behind, price of currencies skyrocket and fall down, customers ask new features, regulators announce new rules - it’s a realm of uncontrolled chaos.”

And in terms of the future, Kolochenko asserts that we can only hope other organisations in the digital currency and blockchain markets learn from these breaches.

“While such negligence is understandable, it will unlikely provide any justification in case of a breach. Civil damages claimed by the victims can be very important, while the impending enforcement of GDPR in May will impose additional fines for such carelessness,” Kolochenko concludes.

How to configure your firewall for maximum effectiveness
ManageEngine offers some firewall best practices that can help security admins handle the conundrum of speed vs security.
Exclusive: Why botnets will swarm IoT devices
“What if these nodes were able to make autonomous decisions with minimal supervision, use their collective intelligence to solve problems?”
Why you should leverage a next-gen firewall platform
Through full lifecycle-based threat detection and prevention, organisations are able to manage the entire threat lifecycle without adding additional solutions.
The quid pro quo in the IoT age
Consumer consciousness around data privacy, security and stewardship has increased tenfold in recent years, forcing businesses to make customer privacy a business imperative.
ForeScout acquires OT security company SecurityMatters for US$113mil
Recent cyberattacks, such as WannaCry, NotPetya and Triton, demonstrated how vulnerable OT networks can result in significant business disruption and financial loss.
Exclusive: Fileless malware driving uptake of behavioural analytics
Fileless malware often finds its way into organisations via web browsers (or in combination with other vectors such as infected USB drives).
'DerpTrolling’ faces jail time for Sony DoS attacks
A United States federal court has charged a 23-year-old man for the hacks on Sony Online Entertainment and other major companies back in 2014.
It's time to rethink your back-up and recovery strategy
"It is becoming apparent that legacy approaches to backup and recovery may no longer be sufficient for most organisations."