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Kaspersky: Crypto Phishing Attacks Increased in 2022

  • Crypto phishing attacks resulted in heavy losses for traders and investors.
  • Hackers and attackers are drawn to the crypto space because of its unregulated nature.
  • Recognizing how hackers operate is a huge safety measure to adopt.

The number of crypto cyberattacks has surged over the last few years. However, security experts have detected a change in approach on the part of the criminal groups. Scammers appear to be using fewer conventional financial threats, such as banking PC and mobile malware, and instead have focused on phishing.

Kaspersky, a Russian cybersecurity and antivirus company, reported that in 2022, there was a 40% year-on-year increase in crypto phishing attacks. During the year, the company identified 5,040,520 crypto phishing attacks, up from 3,596,437 in 2021.

Kaspersky wrote that scammers are focused on improving their techniques because “crypto still remains a symbol of getting rich quick with minimal effort.” One out of every seven respondents to a Kaspersky poll from 2022 acknowledged having fallen victim to crypto phishing. The majority of scams use fake wallet phishing pages or giveaway schemes. However, attackers frequently modify how they operate.

Kaspersky observed that a standard phishing attack involves contacting investors using phony websites and communication channels that look exactly like legitimate businesses. Afterward, users are asked to provide private keys and other private data, giving hackers unauthorized access to cryptocurrency wallets and other assets.

Phishing attacks have continued in 2023, according to Kaspersky. Hardware developer Trezor recently warned against tactics used by scammers to access and steal customers’ funds. According to Trezor, scammers lure investors into providing their recovery phrase on a phony Trezor website.

Crypto scams in 2023 Q1

Reports from the first quarter of 2023 show that crypto hackers and scammers walked away with $452 million from scam attacks in Q1. Although the figure represents a huge reduction from the $1.3 billion reported in the first quarter of 2022, the recovery rate of the stolen funds also decreased.

According to reports, almost half of the $215 million in losses recorded in Q1 happened in the first three weeks of March. Euler Finance and Bonq DAO exploits led the pack with losses of $196 million and $120 million, respectively. 

The Ethereum blockchain saw the largest losses in terms of dollars, even though BNB Chain had more attacks than the Ethereum network (18 to 10). Reports found that smart contract exploits were the most prevalent attack, accounting for 17 incidents.

Out of the $452 million in stolen funds, $130 million was ultimately recovered in Q1 2023, a recovery percentage of 28.7%. This recovery figure represents a slow movement from the $520 million recovered from the $1.3 billion that was stolen in Q1 2022, representing a 40% recovery rate.

The need for precautionary measures

The widespread adoption of cryptocurrency has increased the prevalence of scams of all kinds. Cybercriminals have developed a variety of tactics, and blockchain technology’s anonymity allows many of them to get away with such scams. These cybercriminals have focused on the cryptocurrency field primarily due to its unregulated nature.

It’s critical to maintain attention to detail to avoid falling victim to any kind of cryptocurrency fraud. Scammers will undoubtedly continue to target the crypto sector as it expands and becomes more complex. Traders and investors would be able to recognize crypto-related frauds early on and avoid becoming victims by recognizing the usual methods that scammers commonly use to steal information and eventually money.

Lawrence Woriji
Lawrence Woriji Verified Author

I have covered some exciting stories in my career as a journalist and find blockchain-related stories very intriguing. I believe Web3 will change the world and want everyone to be a part of it.

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