US crypto firm Nomad hit by $190 million theft

Representations of cryptocurrencies in this illustration, taken January 24, 2022. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/

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LONDON, Aug. 2 (Reuters) – US crypto firm Nomad has been hit by a $190 million theft, blockchain researchers said Tuesday, the last such heist to hit the digital asset sector this year.

Nomad said in a tweet that it was “aware of the incident” and is currently investigating, without providing further details or the value of the theft.

Crypto analytics firm PeckShield told Reuters that $190 million worth of cryptocurrencies had been stolen from users, including ether and the stablecoin USDC. Other blockchain researchers estimate the figure at more than $150 million.

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Nomad of San Francisco did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The company has notified law enforcement and is working with blockchain forensic firms to try to identify the accounts involved and recover the funds, it said in a statement to crypto news outlet CoinDesk.

Nomad, which last week raised $22 million from investors including major US exchange Coinbase Global (COIN.O), creates software that connects several blockchains — the digital ledgers underpinning most cryptocurrencies.

The heist targeted Nomad’s “bridge” – a tool that allows users to transfer tokens between blockchains.

Blockchain bridges have increasingly become the target of thefts, which have long plagued the crypto sector. More than $1 billion has been stolen from bridges so far by 2022, according to London-based blockchain analytics firm Elliptic. read more

In June, US crypto firm Harmony said thieves stole about $100 million worth of tokens from its Horizon bridge product. read more

In March, hackers stole approximately $615 million worth of cryptocurrency from Ronin Bridge, which was used to transfer crypto in and out of the game Axie Infinity. The United States linked North Korean hackers to the theft. read more

Nomad described itself as a company that kept “security first” and would keep users’ money safe.

PeckShield said a small portion of the coins were moved to a so-called “mixer,” which masks the trail of crypto transactions, while about $95 million was kept in three other wallets.

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Reporting by Elizabeth Howcroft; adaptation by Tom Wilson and Christina Fincher

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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