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Scammers drained nearly $300m in 2023, data shows

scammers-drained-nearly-300m-in-2023-data-shows
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Scammers drained nearly $300m in 2023, data shows

Wallet drainers have stolen $295 million in cryptocurrencies from about 324,000 victims in 2023, Scam Sniffer reports.

According to Scam Sniffer’s latest research report, the scale of wallet drainer-reported incidents continue to underscore the severity of the issue, with nearly $7 million pilfered on Mar. 11 alone. Factors such as the USDC depeg and phishing websites impersonating Circle contributed to this spike, emphasizing the dynamic nature of the attacks, the analysts added.

“Over the past year, phishing activities have steadily increased each month with phishing scammers employing more sophisticated tactics to evade security measures.”

Scam Sniffer

The overall trend reveals an alarming escalation in the scale and sophistication of phishing attacks. As noted by Scam Sniffer, phishing activities exhibit continuous growth, marked by the rapid replacement of one Drainer with another as Angel, for instance, appears to be the successor to Inferno Drainer, a malware that pilfered over $80 million in just nine months in 2023.

Scammers drained nearly $300m in 2023, data shows - 1
Crypto wallet drainers trends | Source: Scam Sniffer

According to the analysts, phishing attacks employ various schemes focused on signing methods, which grant bad actors specific rights to drain cryptocurrencies from either digital wallets or smart contracts. Among the 13 most severe incidents, experiencing cumulative losses of $50 million, victims usually suffered from scammers signing such approvals as Increase Allowance, Increase Approval, ERC20 Permit, Approve, and others.

In total, Scam Sniffer identified almost 145,000 malicious URLs in 2023. Despite some drainers going dark, new ones keep replacing them, illustrating the persistent challenge posed by these malicious actors.