Episode 3 – $3,000,000 Worth of Crypto Punks, Gone
Watch, and learn from the unfortunate story of Stazie, a NFT collector who lost Punks through a phishing attack and from our Chief Tech Officer Charles Guillemet.
cript: – It was like 1, 000 punches in your stomach, and 1, 000 punches in every other part of your body. That was terrible, like, just absolutely terrible. – [Man #1] My account was hacked. – [Man #2] Somebody stole 21 Bitcoin out of it. – [Reporter #1] $2 million in cryptocurrency stolen. – [Reporter #2] 47 million dollars– – [Reporter #3] Million dollars’ worth of cryptocurrency. – [Woman] My heart sank… like, completely sank. – [Man #3] Everything we had was gone. – I was born in Siberia, in the Soviet Union. Me growing up in the Soviet Union, with this oppressive culture, intellectually, was probably one of the reasons that crypto made sense to me from the very beginning. This whole idea of decentralization and taking the power to the individual without relying on authoritative structures and organizations. And then the NFTs came along, I discovered CryptoPunks. I can’t remember how… but when I saw them, I immediately fell in love. It’s beautiful, simplistic pixel art. So, I’ve started collecting them, and I had probably around 18 Punks at some point. And the price of CryptoPunks around that time was definitely below one ETH, while today it’s probably around 75 ETH for the Floor Punk. So, one day, I think it was like late July, I was really like having a difficult time and feeling burned out. I was lying in my bed and looking at the computer screen, browsing, and there was a DM, it had a website link to Larva Labs. I clicked on it, and it looked like a real website, but of course it was a fake website. When I tried to connect the wallet, it gave me a message that said something like, there was some kind of small breach, but don’t worry, there is no risk. You just need to enter your seed phrase to reconnect your wallet. It was absolutely idiotic, and the only reason I could fall for that is because I was not in the right frame of mind at all, like I was just totally, like, in the fog. And then I realized what happened. I went to my wallet, and I saw like Punks disappearing. You know, at that time, I lost 15 Punks. So, I paid a very, very high price for that. They originally stole all 16 CryptoPunks, and then they transferred one back to me, the one that at the time I used as my profile avatar. I guess they had a little moment of… kind of like, pity. But obviously, you know, it was also good to have at least one of my Punks back. – This is a typical example where the attackers just make phishing techniques. It tricks the users into making think there was an issue, and to solve this issue, you have to input your 24 words. This one is not that sophisticated, this is a simple one. Unfortunately, phishing techniques are low-hanging fruit for attackers. It’s quite cheap to implement and very efficient. Creating this kind of technique is only one or two days of work. So, the opportunity cost is quite high for attackers. – The smart contract that controls the Punks is absolutely 100% decentralized, so no one can do anything, not Larva Labs, not the police. This is part of the risk of taking control of your finances. No one can help you, you are your own custodian, your own insurance, and your own protection. BE SAFE –
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