Harmony Horizon bridge loses $100M due to hack

Crypto in 2022 has continued to face problems, and hacking is one of the major issues. It has led to decreased investor trust and thus decreased investments. The latest in this regard is the hacking of the Harmony Horizon bridge. Bridges have remained prone to hackers because of their architecture and possible lapses. These hacking attacks will cost more than $1 billion in 2022 and might continue. There is a range of vulnerabilities that cause the loss of huge amounts.

Ronin bridge is one of the recent victims that lost considerable value as the attacker could access a threshold number of keys. In another attack, the Wormhole exploit was mainly due to a bug in smart contracts that caused a huge loss. There is no clear information about how Harmony Horizon bridge fell victim to this hacking attack.

Here is a brief overview of the theft, its impacts, and how much it has cost the blockchain.

Harmony bridges and security lapse

Harmony Protocol is a layer-1 blockchain facing problems as the bearish market has emaciated businesses. The recent loss came not in the form of sell-offs and liquidations due to the unfavorable market situation. Instead, it came from the exploit that deprived it of a significant value. A hacker took hold of its Horizon bridge, controlling it for more than 20 minutes.

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Source: ZachSBT

The hack resulted at a time when Harmony TVL had reached $85 million. The reason for the loss is investors’ uncertainty as they have seen bears in a dominant mood. The speedy loss has forced them to reconsider their investments. Also, the market cap value for Harmony has been reduced to under $300 million. The free-fall situation has made it uncertain what this blockchain’s future will be.

Harmony Protocol’s official Twitter account disclosed in a tweet that the Horizon bridge had been compromised by a hacker. It is a bridge between Binance Chain, Ethereum, and Bitcoin. According to the available updates, the Bitcoin bridge has remained safe and hasn’t been affected by the mentioned attack.

Hack resulting in loss of $100 million

The hack has confirmed the fears of community members who had raised questions about the bridge’s security. It has also questioned the robustness of the various bridges of the Harmony blockchain. The hacker took control of the bridge at 7:06 AM and lasted until 7:26 AM ET. The hacker made 11 transactions in the specified time bracket. S/He made transactions to different wallets while converting them to ETH. Different coins like FRAX, WETH, AAVE, SUSHI, USDT, USDC, etc., have been stolen. The total capital theft from the blockchain bridge is about $100 million.

The Horizon bridge is used for transactions between Harmony and Ethereum networks, Binance Chain, and Bitcoin. A post-mortem will look into the matter to identify the attackers and possible loopholes. The Harmony team will coordinate with authorities and forensic experts to get in-depth information. It uses proof-of-stake consensus for transactions while the native token is ONE.

Vitalik Buterin had discussed the possible bridge-related problems back in January 2022. He had said that the compromise of the bridge increased 51% risk on the main chain.

Conclusion

Harmony blockchain’s Horizon bridge has seen a huge theft in value, which resulted in the loss of $100 million. The theft has weakened the blockchain, which has continued to see problems arising from the bearish market. Security agencies will coordinate with the management team so that the culprit of the attack is caught and the sum retrieved. The loss has resulted in a 9% decrease in the value of the blockchain’s native token ONE.