Crypto Espresso: Nearly $3bn in breaches, Instagram gets into the Flow, and Binance Labs gets a new boss
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Morning Coinheads! This morning’s news includes a staggering $2.8 billion in crypto has been stolen by hackers so far this year, Binance Labs has a new CEO and Aussie Instagram users can now showcase their NFTs on the platform.
But first, let’s look at numbers, because we get almost as excited about numbers as The Count.
The majors have continued to perform poorly over the past 24 hours, with Bitcoin posting its seventh negative day in a row. However, Coindesk notes there are signs that things may be stabilising, with both volume and volatility on the decline.
That negative sentiment has flowed through to most of the other big coins, and the numbers look like this:
FLOW has been the big winner overnight, jumping ~40% on news as outlined below, and MULTI, which blew up by ~23%.
Grab as much caffeine as you can and start fuelling the beast – the weekend is only a few short hours away.
In a follow-up to our story yesterday on two major crypto hacks this week, a recent report has claimed that hackers have managed to steal more than $2.8 billion so far this year, with cross-chain bridges emerging as the soft, juicy underbelly of the sector.
The claim comes from Chainalysis, in a report that outlines that there have been 13 major security breaches since the start of 2022, and the precise identity of those responsible for most of the thefts remains a mystery.
Now, just so we’re clear on one thing, and that is our very strong desire to not be snatched from our homes in the dead of night by highly-trained “wet work” operatives.
Having said that, we can report that the analysts reckon that it’s mostly North Korea behind the hacks, as the hermit state struggles to find a more efficient way of making money than beating its citizens with sticks and making them grind for gold in World of Warcraft.
Chainalysis says Second-Best Korea is behind at least $1.4 billion dollars of the thefts, all of them via weak security around cross-chain bridges.
The DPRK has turned to cybercrime as a major source of income, as global sanctions continue to bite deep, severely limiting its ability to fund Dear Leader’s monthly fudge, whisky and useless missile expenditure.
Anyway – the Chainalysis report is a great read. You’ll find it here.
Instagram has announced an expansion of its NFT initiative, widening the userbase able to showcase their verified Flow NFTs on their account, in between photos of themselves on someone else’s yacht and short videos of themselves enjoying the luxuries of someone else’s home.
According to Decrypt, the feature lets users connect a supported crypto wallet to prove ownership of NFT collectibles and choose which ones to display, with both the owner and original creator automatically attributed alongside the asset.
News of the expansion lit a bit of a fire under FLOW token, which jumped aggressively from $2.67 to $3.97 around midnight last night, and is currently hovering around $3.75 – close to 40% higher for the week.
Meta, (the platform formerly known as Facebook) initially launched the NFT on Instagram (the platform formerly known as the place to be seen) to a limited number of users in the US – this more comprehensive launch includes Asia, Africa, the Middle East and – natch – Australia.
After a quick look around the boardroom table to see who’s not very busy at the moment, Binance has picked co-founder Yi He to Head of Binance Labs, the $7.5bn venture capital and incubator arm.
We’re kidding about the boardroom bit, obviously – Yi brings to the new role an impeccable pedigree and years of experience in crypto, as evidenced by this forthright statement from Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao, (who likes to be called CZ, because… crypto).
“As part of the founding team, Yi has been actively involved in Labs since its inception and has played a pivotal role in identifying early-stage projects and founders with the vision and drive to disrupt those global institutions that no longer serve society effectively,” CZ said. “This is the perfect moment for Yi to take on a larger role in Labs as this market presents an unparalleled opportunity to identify those projects with the tenacity to thrive in tough market conditions.”
Aussie Binance CEO Leigh Travers is also pretty enthusiastic about Yi’s appointment, saying of Yi: “Her drive to build a standard for the blockchain industry is an encouragement to founders and teams developing sustainable projects that promote the adoption of blockchain and cryptocurrency in mainstream.
“We’re seeing incredible achievements within the Australian Web3 community,” Travers said, adding, “We’ve already seen the Australian market evolve into a hub for Web3, so with the forecasted scale of the global industry it’s key to continue fostering innovation.”