Upbit Stolen Ethereum (ETH) On the Move Again

The large haul of ETH is split into smaller tranches and moved into new wallets, in a move that will make tracking more difficult.

The funds from the Upbit theft are on the move again, with several transactions taking away around 10,000 Ethereum (ETH) each.

The transactions moved 1,001 ETH twice, then 10,000 ETH and 10,001 ETH. In theory, it is possible to track and target those wallets, but the hacker is making it harder for researchers.

https://twitter.com/whale_alert/status/1201527560322060289

The transfers continued over the past day, with another tranche happening around 8:00 UTC on Tuesday.

https://twitter.com/whale_alert/status/1201771489206439936

So far, only test amounts of ETH have been sent to exchanges. The moves of the hacker resemble those of one of the hacker groups that tends to split the coins relatively quickly. At this point, exchanges have pledged to track the origin of coins, but they may have to look for a longer chain of addresses with smaller amounts of ETH.

ETH coins can be obscured in several ways. Trading on decentralized exchanges is a possibility, though those markets have relatively low volumes. The other possible approach is to pay some of the coins as miner fees, if the thief has a known ETH miner who discovers a block.

The Upbit hack for now does not affect markets heavily. The ETH market price remains stagnant at $148.12, as most prices remain unchanged in the new week. ETH now sees slightly diminished liquidity at $6.4 billion’s equivalent in 24 hours, down from levels above $9 billion during more active days.

In the days leading up to the hack, Upbit had announced several wallet maintenance periods. The transfer of 342,000 ETH happened at a time when the exchange was moving other coins. So far, there are no official reports on other assets lost except for the ETH. The coincidence of wallet maintenance with the hack has suggested a potential insider attack.

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