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Poloniex hacker moves stolen funds for first time, keeping $182m untouched

The Poloniex cryptocurrency exchange hacker transferred 100 ETH to the Tornado Cash mixer.

According to journalist Colin Wu, this is the first time a hacker has decided to launder stolen assets. At the same time, $182 million worth of cryptocurrencies in Ethereum (ETH), Tron (TRX), Bitcoin (BTC), and Bitcoin Token (BTCT) remain in the hacker’s wallet.

On Nov. 10, 2023, Poloniex lost almost $125 million in cryptocurrencies due to the attack. Exchange owner Justin Sun announced the successful identification and freezing of part of the assets associated with the hacker’s addresses. Later, Sun offered the hacker to return the stolen assets for a reward of $10 million.

Hackers of the Kronos Research cryptocurrency platform and the Hundred Finance cross-chain lending protocol also began transferring funds to the cryptocurrency mixing service Tornado Cash.

Analytics company PeckShield reported that the hacker initially conducted a test transaction with $200 worth of ETH, after which he transferred 1,314 ETH, equivalent to nearly $4 million, to a new address. From the final address, the hacker made 10 transactions of 100 ETH, moving the funds to the Tornado Cash service.

The funds sent to Tornado Cash increased to 3,000 ETH for approximately $3 million.

Kronos Capital was hacked in November 2023 after attackers managed to access API keys.

Since Tornado Cash can be used to move illegally obtained funds, the U.S. government imposed sanctions against this crypto mixer in August 2022. Its developers were charged with money laundering and sanctions violations. At the end of March, the prosecutor’s office demanded that the court sentence the co-founder of Tornado Cash, Alexey Pertsev, to a five-year prison sentence.

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