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Over the last few weeks, the hacker of Wormhole DeFi bridge has turned active once again converting his Ether into ETH-pegged assets like Lido’s stETH and wstETH.
Last year in February 2022, a hacker exploited the DeFi bridge Wormhole by stealing a staggering 120 wETH worth $320 million at that time. Wormholde served as a DeFi bridge between Ethereum and Solana and allowed the swapping of SOL with other digital assets.
The latest data shows that the ill-gotten crypto is once again on the move. On-chain data shows that $46 million of the stored wETH have just moved off the hacker’s wallet. Blockchain security firm PeckShield stated that the hacker’s associated wallet has become active once again.
This wallet consisted of 24,400 Lido Finance-wrapped Ethereum staking tokens (wstETH) worth a staggering $41.4 million. Besides, it also consisted of 3,000 Rocket Pool Ethereum staking token (rETH), worth $5 million, later moved to MakerDAO.
Peckshield further reported that the hacker is looking to seek yield or arbitrage opportunities on the stolen loot as the assets have been exchanged for 16.6 million DAI. Using the MakerDAO stablecoin, the hacker bought 9,750 ETH priced at around $1,537 and 1,000 stETH. They were later wrapped back into 9,700 wstETH.
#PeckShieldAlert The Wormhole Network Exploiter 0x629e supplied $46M worth of cryptos, including 24.4k $wstETH ($41.4M) & 3k $rETH (~$5M), to MakerDAO for 16.6M $DAI & used them to buy 9.75k $ETH ($ETH at $1,537) & 1k $stETH ($ETH at $1,543), then wrapped them for ~9.7k $wstETH pic.twitter.com/BRfygHgpit
— PeckShieldAlert (@PeckShieldAlert) February 12, 2023
Last Friday, February 10, on-chain data showed that the hacker was buying the dip. However, Ethereum (ETH) has also been facing selling pressure over the last weekend. As of press time, ETH is trading more than 3% down under $1,500 levels.
During the time of transfers, the stETH price de-pegged from Ethereum and surged as high as $1,570. Besides, wstETH had also depegged from Ether further rising 11.3% higher to $1,676.
The hacker of DeFi bridge Wormhole has been much active recently. A few weeks ago, the hacker had moved another $155 million to a decentralized exchange. Last month on January 24, the hacker sent 95,630 ETH to the OpenOcean DEX. Later, he subsequently converted them into ETH-pegged assets like Lido’s stETH and wstETH.
DeFi Hacks on the Rise
Hacks in the decentralized finance (DeFi) space have been soaring over the last year. The DeFi space alone had lost more than $4 billion to hacks taking place in the crypto space last year.
As centralized players have repeatedly failed to deliver up to customers’ expectations, decentralized finance protocols have been gaining massive traction recently.
Since the beginning of 2023, DeFi is gathering steam once again and showing healthy activity. DeFi protocols are once again in demand with the SEC shutting down Kraken’s crypto staking facility last week.