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British Exchange Lykke Loses $22 Million In Cyberattack

Jimmy Aki
Last updated: | 2 min read
Lykke cyberattack

UK-based cryptocurrency exchange Lykke abruptly ceased trading operations on June 10, following last week’s security breach that resulted in the loss of more than $22 million.

The Lykke exchange confirmed the incident in an official statement on X, saying it had to suspend trading and withdrawals in a bid to mitigate further harm.

Withdrawal Operations Halted Following Lykke Cyberattack

The crypto platform said it had uncovered the IP address of the perpetrator responsible for the Lykke cyberattack and had commenced an investigation.

Prior to the exchange’s admission, on-chain investigator SomaXBT had accused the exchange of concealing the breach.

SomaXBT had sounded the alarm on June 9 about the Lykke cyberattack. The investigator revealed that hackers stole 158 BTC and 2,161 ETH worth an estimated $19.5 million.

MetaMask developer Taylor Monahan later confirmed the total stolen assets amounted to $22.4 million.

Further investigation revealed that the hacker laundered the stolen Ether by swapping them for DAI, an algorithmic stablecoin issued by MakerDAO. The Bitcoins were subsequently transferred to multiple wallets. It’s not uncommon for hackers to transfer their loot to unrelated wallets before legitimizing the coins using a coin mixer.

Lykke’s cyberattack followed the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), which issued a warning against Lykke for promoting unauthorized financial services.

The regulator warned UK investors to exercise caution when engaging with the exchange, noting that it was unregistered. This means UK investors can’t file complaints with the Financial Ombudsman Service and are not protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS).

Crypto Hacks Continue to Score New Points

The Lykke cyberattack is the latest in a series of security breaches that have plagued the cryptocurrency industry in recent weeks.

This incident follows the DMM Bitcoin crypto hack on May 31, where cybercriminals stole 4,502.9 BTC ($320 million). The Japanese exchange plans to raise funds to buy BTC to compensate its customers who suffered the loss, however.

Despite its fundraising efforts, the DMM Bitcoin hack is one of the largest in the history of crypto exchanges, underlining the lingering severe vulnerabilities within the sector.

The scale of crypto hacks and thefts has reached alarming levels in 2024.

According to data from DefiLlama, the total value of stolen crypto assets in 2024 has already surpassed $600 million.

Lykke cyberattack
Crypto hacks for the midpoint of the year are over $600M

The figure exceeds the $433 million recorded during the first half of 2023, indicating a growing trend in the frequency of these cyberattacks.