On Wednesday, March 23rd, the Ronin Network, the Ethereum-based blockchain powering popular NFT game Axie Infinity, reported one of the biggest hacks in crypto history, losing $625 million in an exploit.
The United States Department of the Treasury now alleges that North Korean hacking group ‘Lazarus’ was the group responsible for last month’s $625 million Ronin Network hack.
Lazarus Group Behind $625 Million Ronin Hack
On April 14th, the U.S. Treasury announced that it had added a new Ethereum wallet address to its sanctions list for the Lazarus Group.
The Ethereum wallet address which was listed by the Treasury matched the same one labeled as “Ronin Bridge Exploiter” by Sky Mavis, the creators of Axie Infinity. Chainalysis has also confirmed that the address was the same one used in the Ronin exploit.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation brands the Lazarus Group, whose earliest attacks date back to 2009, a “state-sponsored hacking organization.”
Despite numerous high-profile cyber-attacks, including the 2014 breach of Sony Pictures and numerous attacks on pharmaceuticals in 2020, this is the first time the Treasury has publicly linked and blacklisted a crypto wallet address linked to Lazarus.
On confirming the wallet address attack, Elliptic wrote in a blog post, “many features of the attack mirrored the method used by the Lazarus Group in previous high-profile attacks.”
On the Flipside
- Shortly after losing $625 million in the hack, Sky Mavis launched a new stand-alone Axie game raising $150 million in a funding round.
Why You Should Care
Since the attack, Sky Mavis has been working to reimburse users who lost funds to the hack, and to enhance the security of the Ronin Bridge before redeploying it.