Funds stolen from the FTX cryptocurrency exchange are now being converted from ETH to Bitcoin, according to blockchain analysis firm Chainalysis. On Nov. 20, Chainalysis took to Twitter to encourage exchanges to freeze the tokens in case thieves try to convert them into fiat or otherwise further obfuscate the assets.
1/ Funds stolen from FTX are flowing, exchanges should be on high alert to freeze funds if hackers try to cash out
– Chainalysis (@chainalysis) November 20, 2022
During the controversial FTX collapse and bankruptcy, news emerged that 228,523 ETH had been stolen from the exchange by an unknown actor. Ownership of the coins was worth a whopping $268,057,479 at the time of publication, currently ranking the thief as one of the largest ETH owners in the world.
UPDATE: FTX Hacker is now actively dumping on-chain ETH
He dumped about $15M in ETH in the past 30 minutes and just prepared a new batch of $12M
There is still $270 million in ETH in the main wallet
He sold ETH to wBTC and then to renBTC through aggregators such as 1inch https://t.co/mEd8UHFCO0
— kamikaz ΞTH (@kamikaz_ETH) November 20, 2022
While initial reports suggested that all of the funds in question were likely in the custody of securities regulators in the Bahamas, Chainalysis poured cold water on this theory, stating:
“Reports that funds stolen from FTX were actually sent to the Bahamas Securities Commission are incorrect. Some funds were stolen and others were sent to regulators.”
At the time of publication, roughly 31,000 ETH has been converted to wrapped BTC. The thieves then used the Ren protocol to send the coins across the chain to the Bitcoin mainnet wallet, eventually receiving a total of 2444.55 BTC.
Live: FTX Drainer (aka Bahamas Government?) Liquidates ETH
Adi #1 – 0x59
Addie #2 – 0x86
— Garlam (@GarlamWON) November 20, 2022
It’s been a rough few weeks for those affected by the collapse of FTX and its affiliates. Earlier today, a press release indicated that FTX debtors are in talks with financial services firm Perella Weinberg Partners about various restructuring attempts. However, the employment is subject to bankruptcy court approval.
Meanwhile, the company’s founder, Sam Bankman-Fried, is said to remain “under surveillance” in the Bahamas, though there are fears he might try to flee to Dubai if given the chance . It is unclear how that will ultimately play out, as the UAE and the United States have reached an agreement on evidence sharing, judicial cooperation and assistance with criminal investigations and prosecutions.