The hacker or hackers behind the theft from Poly Network, which facilitates peer-to-peer (P2P) transactions, have now returned almost all the $613 million they stole, Reuters reported, as they claim they always intended to do.
The theft was one of the largest reported of cryptocurrency, according to Reuters.
“The repayment process has not yet been completed,” Poly Network announced on Twitter. “To ensure the safe recovery of user asset, we hope to maintain communication with Mr. White Hat and convey accurate information to the public.”
— Poly Network (@PolyNetwork2) August 12, 2021
The hacker has been declared by Poly Network as a “white hat” hacker, or one that was acting in some kind of an ethical manner to show a vulnerability, Reuters reported.
Poly Network has said the tokens were transferred to a multi-signature wallet controlled by both the hacker and the company. According to Reuters, Poly Network offered a $500,000 bounty to the hacker to return the funds. The company also said the hacker would not be held accountable.
The hacking occurred initially on Tuesday (Aug. 10), and the hacker began returning the money on Wednesday, one day later. Some blockchain analysts theorized that the hacker found it too difficult to move such a large amount.
While the hacker or hackers haven’t been publicly identified, one of them reportedly exploited a vulnerability in the digital contracts Poly Network uses to move funds between different blockchains.
They transferred the stolen assets to addresses on Ethereum, Binance Smart Chain and Polygon.
On Wednesday, they had returned around half of the $613 million as of that time. One of the hackers said they did it “for fun” and had always intended to return the funds.
The incident comes as there has been a wave of cybercrimes occurring, especially as the world has largely moved online.