Changpeng Zhao, the CEO of Binance took it to Twitter and talked about an exploitation attempt regarding funds. He mentioned how the attempt was informed by the security team of the exchange. However, the fund movement was being done by the Harmony One hacker. Zhao also mentioned that the hacker was trying to launder funds through Binance. All efforts were in vain as the account was soon frozen. The hacker did not let anything stop him from conducting his malicious acts and he switched exchanges. When the switch to Huobi was discovered, Binance extended a helping hand to Huobi to prevent the laundering of funds.
We detected Harmony One hacker fund movement. They previously tried to launder through Binance and we froze his accounts. This time he used Huobi. We assisted Huobi team to freeze his accounts. Together, 124 BTC have been recovered. CeFi helping to keep DeFi #SAFU! 🙏
— CZ 🔶 Binance (@cz_binance) January 16, 2023
Both of these firms engaged in continuous action to prevent the hacker from laundering the stolen funds. With the assistance of Binance, Huobi was able to halt the accounts involved as well. Similarly, via their joint effort, it became possible to recover almost 124 BTC. As soon as the matter was taken care of, Zhao reassured me that a CeFi firm successfully helped a DeFi company regarding the maintenance of its security.
The hackers responsible for the exploit are claimed to be North Korea’s Lazarus. The group was responsible for moving nearly 41k ETH from the Harmony One Bridge hack over the weekend. These stolen funds were later on transferred in batches of 100 ETH from Tornado Cash to Railgun. Similarly, these same funds were consolidated and stored on three different unnamed exchanges as well.
Binance Steps Up Once Again
As soon as the matter was resolved, the advisor to Huobi Global, Justin Sun, expressed his gratitude. He made it evident that the timely identification and intervention by Binance prevented the hacker from laundering the funds. Keeping the incident in mind, it was mentioned that Huobi would continuously monitor any suspicious activity. When identified, these issues would be instantaneously taken care of to offer maximum security to users.
On 24th June the previous year, an exploit was identified by the teams at Harmony. Back then, funds worth approximately $100 million were compromised. Just a few days later, the Lazarus group was deemed to be the mastermind behind the exploit. Identification was possible when the manner of the hack was compared to some of the group’s previous hacks.