Norwegian police recover $5.8M crypto from massive Axie Infinity hack

  • February 17, 2023
  • 12:19 PM
  • 0


Norwegian police (Økokrim) have seized 60 million kroner ($5,800,000) worth of cryptocurrency stolen by the North Korean Lazarus hacking group last year from Axie Infinity's Ronin Bridge.

This action is the largest financial seizure of this kind to take place in Norway, made possible thanks to the money-tracing capabilities and persistence of Økokrim's investigators.

"Økokrim is good at following money," stated a machine-translated statement from First Attorney Marianne Bender. 

"This case shows that we also have a great capacity to follow the money on the blockchain, even though the criminals use advanced [hiding] methods."

The seized cryptocurrency was stolen from Sky Mavis, the publisher of the blockchain-based game Axie Infinity, which suffered losses of $620 million in March 2022 after an attacker manipulated the game's Ronin bridge to gain partial control of its validators and perform two unauthorized transactions.

The FBI linked the attack to the North Korean Lazarus hackers in April 2022. However, a few months later, the initial intrusion method was revealed to be a fake job offer targeting a Sky Mavis employee, a common method employed by Lazarus.

In September 2022, the FBI, with the help of blockchain experts, seized $30,000,000 worth of cryptocurrency stolen during the attack. While the amount represented only 10% of the stolen cryptocurrency (and 5% of its value), the authorities promised that more seizures would follow.

Indeed, Økokrim says it collaborated with international partners to achieve this seizure, including FBI agents specializing in tracing cryptocurrency transactions.

"These are funds that can support North Korea and its nuclear weapons program. It has therefore been important to trace the cryptocurrency and try to stop the money when they try to convert it into physical assets." - M. Bender (machine translated)

The seized funds will be returned to Sky Mavis, and from there, it will be used for partial victim reimbursement.

Of course, there's still a long way to go to retrieve the total stolen amount, but this new seizure is undoubtedly another blow for Lazarus and North Korea.

Read More
Play Dungeons & Dragons - tower of doom (940113 USA)
    Gameplay Tower of Doom is a side-scrolling arcade game featuring four...
By AFFA 2023-02-23 18:17:54 0 146
ChatGPT is down worldwide - OpenAI working on issues
February 27, 2023   11:07 AM   1 ChatGPT, the famous artificial...
By AFFA 2023-02-27 19:03:00 0 75
October 2023
Beautiful warm days here..sunny probabaly i should do some grilling.. Steaks..where are you...?!
By Fario 2023-10-01 11:53:18 1 4
TikTok flooded by 'Elon Musk' cryptocurrency giveaway scams
September 17, 2023   02:34 PM   0 TikTok is flooded by a surge of...
By AFFA 2023-09-18 19:11:35 0 19
Ransomware access broker steals accounts via Microsoft Teams phishing
September 12, 2023   03:14 PM   1 Image: Midjourney Microsoft...
By AFFA 2023-09-13 21:03:24 0 17