Digital Bandits On The Rise: Crypto Losses Hit $363 Million In November

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The crypto space witnessed a tumultuous November, marking a spike in illicit activities culminating in substantial financial losses. Blockchain security firm CertiK has reported that November 2023 has emerged as the most “damaging” month of the year regarding crypto-related crimes.

The total loss incurred is roughly $363 million, underscoring the crypto industry’s challenges. This surge in criminal activities has once again highlighted the urgent need for enhanced security measures within the digital asset space.

The primary contributors to this unfortunate record were a series of exploits and attacks on various platforms. Of the total sum, exploits accounted for a significant $316.4 million, while flash loan attacks resulted in $45.5 million in damages. Additionally, different exit scams contributed to the theft of $1.1 million.

Major Crypto Incidents Of November: A Closer Look

Diving into the specifics, the largest exploits of the month involved two major platforms: Poloniex and HTX/Heco Bridge, with the former losing $131.4 million and the latter $113.3 million. These incidents stand out due to their magnitude and impact on the overall trust in the crypto ecosystem.

Furthermore, a single victim lost $27 million in a phishing attack, highlighting the sophistication and severity of individual targeting by cybercriminals.

Flash loan attacks, particularly the $45 million KyberSwap attack, accounted for nearly all the damage in this category during November. These attacks, which exploit the vulnerabilities in decentralized finance (DeFi) protocols, have become increasingly prevalent, posing significant challenges to the security of these platforms.

The total losses for November 2023 exceeded the previous record of $329 million set in September, primarily attributed to the $200 million Mixin Network attack.


Combining all the incidents in November we’ve confirmed ~$363M lost to exploits, hacks and scams

This makes November the most damaging month this year

Exit scams were ~$1.1M

Flash loans were ~$45.5M

Exploits were ~$316.4M

See more details below 👇

— CertiK Alert (@CertiKAlert) November 30, 2023

Comparative Analysis: 2023 In Perspective

According to CertiK, by the end of November, the cumulative losses to exploits, exit scams, and flash loan attacks in 2023 amount to approximately $1.7 billion. This figure constitutes only 54% of the total losses in 2022, a year that saw $3.7 billion drained due to similar incidents.

Comparatively, 2021 also recorded losses amounting to $1.7 billion, according to CertiK’s analysis. These statistics highlight a trend of increasing attacks and vulnerabilities within the crypto space, underscoring the escalating need for more effective security protocols and measures to safeguard investors’ assets.

In response to these concerns, some countries are taking proactive steps. For instance, in August, Dubai announced introducing a new licensing program aimed at crypto service providers. As reported by Bitcoinist, the Dubai Virtual Asset Regulatory Authority (VARA) proposed new guidelines for the marketing, advertising, and promoting cryptocurrencies, enhancing investor protection measures in the region.

The global crypto market cap value on TradingView
The global crypto market cap value on the 1-day chart. Source: Crypto TOTAL Market Cap on

Featured image from iStock, Chart from TradingView

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