- A hacker by the username ‘mrsandman1’ has stolen $15,000 worth of PigeonCoin
- The hacker did so by exploiting the CVE-2018-17144 bug
- The coins stolen make up 25% of the total PiegonCoin available on the market
Back in mid-September, developers announced that they had fixed CVE-2018-17144, a vulnerability in the Bitcoin source code. While the problem was sorted in the bitcoin code, smaller crypto projects would take some time to implement the correction. It now appears a hacker tried to take advantage of this and spent an entire day hacking PigeonCoin and managed to steal 235 million PGN tokens.
Unfortunately for the hacker, a user who went by the name ‘mrsandman1”, these efforts resulted in them gaining only $15,000.
The hack in question took place on the 27th of September and was first discovered after BitcoinTalk forums users noticed suspicious activity and traced it to ‘mrsandman1’.
The hacker took advantage of the situation and crashed the PigeonCoin network nodes and initiated what is known as a “51% attack,” which would allow them access unmerited funds.
The developers were then able to initiate an upstream fix of the CVE-2018-17144 Bitcoin bug but by then, the hacker had already made away with 235 million PGN which is over a quarter of all the PGN available in the market.
Why it didn’t earn much
While the hacker succeeded in stealing 235 million PGN, the entire value of what he stole is just about $15,000.
The reason for this is that PGN is not a popular or very valuable cryptocurrency. The hacker most likely did not do their research or they would not have spent the whole day trying to steal a currency that is not widely used or traded.
If they had stolen a similar amount of, say, Bitcoin, they would have gained millions.
On top of the currency not being very valuable, it is not widely used. Very few places accept PGN and so there is little that can be bought with the stolen funds.
On top of this, most exchanges do not trade in it.
Essentially, the hacker spent a whole day working to steal a currency that can hardly be spent or sold.
This theft, while comical in some ways, highlights the need for quicker implementation of bug fixes.
While the amount was stolen was not very significant in this case, far greater amounts of money could be stolen in the future if problems are not addressed faster than they are now..