Even if the NFT marketplace may be weak, scammers are nonetheless active. Despite the fact that NFT sales volumes fell in May and June as a result of the collapse in cryptocurrency values, July saw the greatest number of NFTs actually stolen ever.
NFTs valued at more than $100 million have been stolen this year alone. Elliptic, a blockchain research company, has provided us with these astounding numbers.
How Are Your NFTs Accessed By Scammers?
NFT theft frequently happens as a result of social media security breaches. An example of this might be setting up an NFT trade with a person you believe to be reliable only to learn later that they were a fraudster and had no intention of offering you an NFT in return. Discord is another social media platform where con artists frequently operate. It’s crucial to remain vigilant at all times, from phoney phishing URLs to project Discords getting hacked and even scams in your DMs. It pays to be careful because social media security breaches have contributed to 23% of NFT thefts this year.
Of course, stealing your NFTs is not limited to social media. Many of us have encountered bogus mint links, which con artists offer as legitimate “stealth” drops while using phishing techniques. Through “Free Mints,” NFT theft can also be accomplished. Free mints have become more common because many of us currently have lighter wallets. However, if you are careless, you can be giving con artists permission to sign over your NFTs.
How Much Money Do Scammers Get from NFTs That Are Stolen?
According to Elliptic, NFT scammers make an average of $300,000 every con. Since not all thefts are disclosed to the public, this number is probably much higher. The money is typically laundered so that the thieves can escape with their plunder. It is estimated that $8 million has been laundered through NFT-based platforms. However, “cryptocurrency mixers” have contributed about $329 million worth of cash to the NFT sector. These mixers are employed to conceal the source of the money while laundering the proceeds from NFT schemes. Beware, there are bigger fish at play even though some frauds may be the work of a lone wolf. Elliptic cited a $540 million theft in April connected to the Lazarus Group in North Korea as follows:
“State-sponsored exploits and sanctioned enterprises are becoming a bigger hazard to NFT-based services.”
It is crucial now more than ever to secure your funds and stay safe because of the staggering statistics around NFT theft and the rise in fraud. Read our NFT guide on how to keep your NFT safe.