Ronin hackers used authorized mixers to move stolen money from ETH to BTC

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Last Updated on August 22, 2022 by Bitfinsider

Although the identity of the hackers is thought to be a North Korean cybercrime outfit, the hackers continue to disperse the stolen money utilizing Bitcoin privacy tools in order to remain anonymous.

Since then, the hackers that carried out the $625 million Ronin bridge assault in March have converted the majority of their ETH holdings into BTC via renBTC and the Bitcoin privacy tools Blender and ChipMixer.

On-chain investigator liteZero, who works for SlowMist and contributed to the company’s 2022 Mid-Year Blockchain Security report, has been following the hacker’s behavior. Since the March 23 incident, they described the transactions that took place with the stolen money.

Source: Twitter

The majority of the stolen money was first changed into ETH and delivered to Tornado Cash, an Ethereum crypto mixer that has since been sanctioned, before being bridged to the Bitcoin network and converted into BTC via the Ren protocol.

The report claims that on March 28, the hackers, who are thought to be members of the North Korean cybercrime group Lazarus Group, moved only a small fraction of the fund—6,249 ETH—to controlled exchanges (CEXs), including Huobi with 5,028 ETH and FTX with 1,219 ETH.

The 6249 ETH seems to have been converted into BTC from the CEXs. Following that, the hackers sent 439 BTC, or $20.5 million at the time of publication, to the Blender Bitcoin privacy tool, which was also sanctioned by the US Treasury on May 6.

Source: Twitter

But between April 4 and May 19, the vast majority of the stolen money—175,000 ETH—was gradually transferred to Tornado Cash.

The hackers then converted about 113,000 ETH to renBTC (a wrapped version of BTC) via the decentralized exchanges Uniswap and 1inch. They then used Ren’s decentralized cross-chain bridge to move the assets from ETH to the Bitcoin network and unwrap the renBTC into BTC.

A total of 6,631 BTC were then allocated from there to a number of centralized exchanges and decentralized protocols. The study also revealed that the Ronin hackers used the Bitcoin privacy tool ChipMixer to withdraw 2,871 BTC out of the 3,460 BTC, or $61.6 million as of August 22.

The Ronin hack is still a “mystery to be investigated,” according to liteZero as he wrapped up the Twitter conversation.


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Hardware wallets are safe and secure devices that can be used offline. They keep your cryptocurrency offline, making it impossible for you to be hacked. To find out more on the leading hardware wallets, you may view our reviews here: Ledger & Trezor
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed by the author, or any people mentioned in this article, are for informational purposes only, and they do not constitute financial, investment, legal, tax or other advice. Investing in or trading cryptocurrency or stocks comes with a risk of financial loss.

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