This isn't the first security breach to tarnish 3Commas' reputation. In October 2022, customers reported losing a significant amount of assets in what 3Commas first tried to blame on phishing websites resembling FTX. 3Commas months later owned up to the fact that their database had been compromised, and that API keys were leaked.
The warning list was created to notify potential users of these firms, and to inform them that losses related to the use of those platforms won't be covered by the UK's compensation scheme.
Huobi has claimed they don't operate or promote in the UK, while KuCoin gestured towards adjusting its practices in the UK. Firms on the warning list may be subjected to more serious enforcement actions in the future, including fines or even prison time.
Avalanche co-founder and CEO Emin Gün Sirer drew widespread mockery when announcing that "the amount lost is only $3m", apparently not perceiving that $3 million is a massive sum to most people. He also didn't mention that it constituted almost the entire total TVL of the Stars Arena project, which was left with less than $1 in tokens following the attack.
Stars Arena was fortunate, in that the hacker ultimately contacted them offering to make a deal. The attacker returned 90% of the funds, keeping $300,000 as a "bounty".
The attacker tried to launder around $131 million of the stolen assets by routing them through services including Railgun and THORSwap. After "consultation with advisors, legal counsel, and law enforcement", THORSwap decided to pause its web interface in hopes of making money laundering more challenging for the attacker — although the thief could still interact with the THORSwap smart contracts directly, if they so chose.
Some criticized THORSwap for apparently caving on its censorship-resistant, decentralized ethos. Others, however, saw the move as understandable given the THORSwap developers reside in the United States, which has recently cracked down on mixing services that facilitate the laundering of illicit funds.
"It's a challenging time, not only for our industry but also for the global economy," wrote Yuga Labs CEO, apparently hoping that people ignorant to the past year of disaster across the NFT industry might be willing to attribute Yuga Labs' struggles to macroeconomic forces and not the implosion of the crypto — and particularly NFT — world.
In a long post on Twitter, the project promised "we will refund all investor funds down to the last cent". They also wrote that "Not only are we going to use the fullest extent of the law to go after the person or persons behind this hack / attack, we will also use ALL OTHER MEANS NECESSARY - and we do have such resources at our disposal, to go after the ones who are behind this. (We work with assets within the Russian government directly...)"
In a later post on their website, however, they wrote that they do "not bear legal liability to refund investors for the losses incurred unless the hacked funds are successfully recovered", attributing the incident to force majeure. They repeatedly claimed that they had not been involved in the theft. The project completely took down its website, redirecting it to this post.
Prager Metis is among the auditors who audited FTX, and was noted by FTX's CEO-in-bankruptcy John J. Ray III for advertising itself as "the first CPA firm to officially open its headquarters inside the metaverse".
None of the clients involved with the faulty audits were disclosed in the lawsuit, and the SEC has not issued any statements connecting the charges to the FTX collapse.