September 2023 has emerged as the most devastating month for crypto-related exploits this year, with a staggering $329.8 million lost to malicious activities. In August 2023, the losses due to malicious actions were around $45 million, which is much lower than in September 2023, as reported by Todayq News on September 1, 2023.
Since the start of 2023 and until August, the losses due to attacks were also quite low, but leading the charge in these crypto heists was the Mixin Network, which was hit by an attack on September 23, resulting in a colossal $200 million loss. This decentralized cross-chain transfer protocol, based in Hong Kong, suffered a breach by its cloud service provider.
On September 28, 2023, Mixin Network also allowed attackers to return all stolen assets, as these assets belong to users, and they offered attackers $20 million in return for stolen assets as reported by Todayq News.
The notorious Lazarus Group, a hacking collective with alleged ties to North Korea, has been implicated in both the Mixin Network attack and two other major incidents. These attacks targeted the CoinEx exchange, resulting in $55 million in losses, and the gambling platform Stake(dot)com, where $41 million was stolen.
Cumulatively, these incidents have pushed the total crypto losses for the year due to exploits, scams, and hacks to a staggering $1.34 billion. Other losses in September include $1.9 million due to exit scams, $400,000 from flash loan attacks, and an additional $25 million from phishing attacks, according to CertiK, a blockchain security firm.
In the third quarter of 2023 alone, losses reached nearly $890 million, surpassing the combined losses of the first two quarters, which amounted to $330 million in Q1 and $333 million in Q2, as reported by Beosin, a prominent blockchain security firm. Crypto investors and enthusiasts must remain vigilant in the face of these mounting threats, as security breaches continue to pose significant risks to the digital asset ecosystem.