According to blockchain investigator ZachXBT, infamous non-fungible token (NFT) fraudster Monkey Drainer has stolen 7 Crypto Punks and 20 Otherside artworks valued at 520 ETH, or $800,000.
According to the crypto security firm, PeckShield, the scammer used the Tornado crypto mixer to flush all of the stolen gains.
This is the second time the scammer has struck in a matter of weeks. On October 25th, the scammer made off with $1 million worth of cryptos and NFTs. 2022 October has been the worst month for scams and hacks in the entire history of cryptocurrencies. More than $718 million was stolen across decentralized finance (DeFi) protocols within the first two weeks of October.
The value of the stolen Crypto Punks and Otherside NFTs would have been a lot more if the market was at its highs. Due to the falling price of cryptos, the price of NFTs has consequently plunged.
Why the uptick in NFT and crypto scams in October?
As mentioned above, October 2022 was the worst month for crypto with regard to the number of crimes committed. According to crypto analysis firm Chainalysis, 2022 will surpass 2021 as the biggest year for hacking.
Many of the hacks can be attributed to protocols that are poorly protected. Moreover, many projects do not go through an audit before launch. Such audits are expensive, and young, budding projects often skip this important step.
In early October, the FBI issued a notice for a new type of scam, called “pig butchering.” The fraud is a unique type of “romance scam.” Criminals prey on lonely people online and manipulate them for cash or cryptocurrency, or even NFTs.
Nonetheless, there has been an increase in agencies taking interest in the field. Interpol has created a new crypto crimes-focused unit in Singapore to tackle such cases.