• 29 May, 2024
News

Millions in Crypto Languish in Bridges, Raising Awareness Concerns

Arkham Intelligence, a blockchain analytics firm, has uncovered a concerning trend in the world of cryptocurrency. According to their investigation, numerous cryptocurrency wallets containing substantial amounts of digital assets have been left stuck in bridge contracts for extended periods of time, ranging from six to seven figures. These bridges act as gateways for transferring digital assets between different blockchains.

One notable example is a wallet linked to Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin, which held over $1 million in ETH on the Optimism bridge for nearly seven months. Additionally, an address associated with NFT collector Mike Macdonald appears to have missed claiming around $117,000 in bridge-locked assets linked to Cryptopunk sales, while a wallet named “thomasg.eth” has left roughly $800,000 untouched in the Arbitrum bridge for almost two years. 

Source: Arkham Intelligence

Even crypto exchange Coinbase has not been immune to this issue, as they attempted to transfer $75,000 in USDC to Ethereum via a bridge. But the funds remain unclaimed on the Ethereum mainnet.

There are two possible explanations for these unclaimed funds. Users might have unintentionally neglected to claim their cryptocurrency after initiating cross-chain transfers, as native bridges require manual retrieval of transferred assets. Alternatively, the owners could be deliberately holding the funds within the bridge contracts for investment purposes or perceived security benefits.

Arkham Intelligence advises all cryptocurrency users to meticulously review their transaction history and bridge interactions to ensure no assets remain unclaimed. This incident underlines the significance of caution when managing digital assets across various blockchain networks.

About a year ago, there was a major incident involving the Binance (BNB) Bridge exploit. The person responsible for the exploit, who reportedly stole around 2 million BNB (approximately $600 million), is now facing the risk of being liquidated. The exploiter has transferred 924,821 BNB (worth $249 million) to the Venus Protocol.

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