Cryptocurrency Ethereum Lost
An estimated $150 million to $280 million of cryptocurrency Ethereum has been lost due to an unintentional hack of a code vulnerability. A code bug allowed hackers steal $32M from some multi-signature wallets on July 19, 2017. A patched version of the Parity wallet was released on July 20th. However, the code update left another security hole that allowed one user to take over all multi-signature Parity wallets. The users mistakenly deleted the code library that corresponds to the affected Parity wallets. Five hundred eighty-four Parity wallets belonging to 573 users were affected by the error.
According to the Parity press release, “it was possible to turn the Parity Wallet library contract into a regular multi-sig wallet and become an owner of it by calling the initWallet function”
A user accidentally triggered the code vulnerability and unintentionally transferred all Ethereum to one wallet. That user attempted to undo the error and transfer the cryptocurrency back to the proper wallets. However, he attempted to undo the damage by deleting the code which had transferred ownership of the funds.
Rather than returning the money. Instead, all Ethereumbecame locked in the affected multisignature wallets. There is no way to access the currency.
Parity is a digital currency wallet used to store Ethereum. Until the error is patched, the cryptocurrency cannot be transferred and is inaccessible.
A proposed code update to release the locked-up funds involves updating the Ethereum platform. This would affect the entire platform, not just Parity. Martin Holst Swende, head of security for the Ethereum Foundation, stated that a hard fork of the Ethereum blockchain is required to release the locked cryptocurrency.
Michelle writes about cyber security as well as how to protect your data online. She has worked in internet technology for over 20 years Michelle earned a B.S. in Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. She published a guide to Cyber Security for Business Travelers