Multichain halts on suspected $130M hack, 1 month after CEO disappeared

Multichain asked users to stop using its bridges after a potential exploit that affected its Fantom, Moonriver and Dogechain services


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Multichain has indefinitely halted its services after recognizing an unusual movement of a large number of tokens from its bridging networks to an unidentified address.

On-chain sleuths had earlier raised the possibility of a multi-million dollar exploit after noticing crypto was being pulled out from Multichain’s multi-party computation network.

“The team is not sure what happened and is currently investigating,” Multichain tweeted late Thursday.

“It is recommended that all users suspend the use of Multichain services and revoke all contract approvals related to Multichain.”

Multichain, formerly Anyswap, is meant to allow users to bridge their crypto assets between various blockchain networks. The team said all bridge transactions will remain stalled on their originating chains. No definitive timeline for when services will be back was announced.

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Hours earlier, blockchain security firm PeckShield warned Multichain about sketchy activity on its Fantom (FTM) bridge, showing token outflows of about $102 million. 

The suspected exploit affected tokens including wrapped bitcoin (WBTC), USDC, DAI, ether (ETH) and chainlink (LINK). It is estimated the movements led to more than $130 million in losses. 

Missing Multichain CEO raises concerns

Multichain had come under fire over the past month due to issues with its technology not functioning as expected. There’s currently $1.26 billion in total value locked with Multichain, per DeFiLlama.

Crypto exchange Binance has suspended various token deposits from Multichain on two separate occasions after several days of stuck transactions.

Adding to the troubles, the CEO has been mysteriously missing for more than a month. Speculation had circulated that some team members may have been detained by Chinese authorities.

In late May, the team said it was “unable to contact CEO Zhaojun and obtain the necessary server access for maintenance,” indicating the top boss was the only person with the right permissions to solve its problems at the time.

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