On August 02, 2022, something spectacular happened in the crypto industry. A transaction having a whopping sum of $350k on the Ethereum (ETH) network failed, and the fee was not returned.
This singular event has brought about a lot of controversies, with many people terming it the first decentralized robbery ever to occur.
The nomad bridge exploit was spectacular because, unlike other robberies or exploits, it was not a flash loan or an attack carried out by a single group of attackers. Instead, after the initial hacker committed the fraud, he left open a gateway for others to penetrate and grab the stolen funds.
This series of attacks proved disastrous, and the bridge descended from a lofty high of over 190 million dollars to a measly 1000 dollars in just a few hours.
The scary part of this robbery is the vulnerability of the bridge because all the other users that had access to the bridge funds had to do was very simple.
First, they copied the original hacker’s transaction call data, replaced the original address with a personal one, and it’s done by punching a few keys. However, it’s important to note that not all the users had evil motives for grabbing the funds.
Some, like leadingscientist.eth had the intention of returning the funds but grabbed them on time so that others won’t be able to lay their hands on them. Others, on the other hand, believed it was a money laundering effort by the sender, and the transaction didn’t fail.
The sender was accused of an unknown type of money laundering whereby the sender moves illegal and stolen tokens to the block’s miner by adding so much gas fees when the gas price is low.
But it seems the hacker is an amateur because there are traces of his activities all over, and he is even linked to a wallet with ENS having a name bitliq.eth, and it seems he had previously been involved in a similar fraud.