Search This Blog

US Government Seizes Cryptocurrency Worth $30 Million From Lazarus Hackers

The total financial damage caused by Lazarus' Axie Infinity hack is around $620 million, so the amount that has been recovered is represent only 5%.
The U.S. government in collaboration with blockchain analysts and FBI agents successfully seized $30 million worth of cryptocurrency stolen by the North Korean-linked hacker group 'Lazarus' from the popular token-based 'play-to-earn' game Axie Infinity earlier in the year. 

The government reported this news during the AxieCon event today, where the officials highlighted it as a big achievement. The officials further appreciated and encouraged large-scale collaboration between multiple law enforcement authorities and private entities against growing cyber threats. 

As per the statements made by blockchain analysts on Thursday, it's a momentous event for law enforcement agencies as it is the first time when the agencies have successfully seized crypto tokens from the infamous Lazarus Group. 

“I am proud to say that the Chainalysis Crypto Incident Response team played a role in these seizures, utilizing advanced tracing techniques to follow stolen funds to cash out points and liaising with law enforcement and industry players to quickly freeze funds”, the blog reads. 

Chainalysis talked about the laundering process of the group which involves the following five stages:  

• Stolen Ether sent to intermediary wallets 
• Ether mixed in batches using Tornado Cash 
• Ether swapped for bitcoin 
• Bitcoin mixed in batches 
• Bitcoin deposited to crypto-to-fiat services for cashout,  

However, following the incident, the US Office of Foreign Assets Control - Sanctions Programs and Information has sanctioned tornado cash for its role in the cryptocurrency laundering case. 

The total financial damage caused by Lazarus' Axie Infinity hack is around $620 million, thus, the amount that has been recovered represents only 5% of that value and 10% of the cryptocurrency amount. 

The analysts further stated they “have proven that with the right blockchain analysis tools, world-class investigators and compliance professionals can collaborate to stop even the most sophisticated hackers and launderers. There is still work to be done, but this is a milestone in our efforts to make the cryptocurrency ecosystem safer.” 

Hence, the US government and New York-based blockchain analysis firm are confident that in the future they will recover more damages from the past.
Share it:

Cryptocurrency Fraud

Cyber Fraud

Cybercrimes

Lazarus Group

Online Banking

USA