$100 million stolen from crypto firm Harmony

The latest in a line of cyber heists on a sector that has long been targeted by hackers, U.S. cryptocurrency business Harmony said on Friday that criminals took around $100 million worth of digital currencies from one of its core products.

Harmony creates blockchains for non-fungible tokens and so-called decentralized finance, or peer-to-peer platforms that provide loans and other services without the need for conventional gatekeepers like banks.

The California-based business said that the theft occurred against their Horizon “bridge,” a device for moving cryptocurrency across several blockchains, the fundamental technology behind digital currencies like bitcoin and ether.

Businesses in the crypto industry have long been plagued by theft, with blockchain bridges becoming more frequently attacked. According to London-based blockchain analytics company Elliptic, almost $1 billion has been taken from bridges so far in 2022.

Without providing any other information, Harmony tweeted that it was “working with national authorities and forensic professionals to locate the criminal and return the stolen monies.”

A worldwide team was “working around the clock to fix the issue,” Harmony said in a statement.

A representative for Harmony stated, “We are presently reducing the potential attack vectors while seeking to identify the perpetrator,” adding that the company has previously made an attempt to get in touch with the hacker by sending money to their cryptocurrency wallet address.

The hackers broke into Harmony and stole many cryptocurrencies, including ether, Tether, and USD Coin. They subsequently exchanged these stolen coins for ether via so-called decentralized exchanges, according to Elliptic, a company that analyses publicly accessible blockchain data.

Axie Infinity’s Ronin Bridge, which was used to transfer money in and out, was attacked by hackers in March, taking almost $615 million worth of cryptocurrency. The heist was connected to North Korean hackers by the US.

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