Poly Network, the decentralized finance protocol, has asked the man behind the $610 million scam an advisory position and $500,000 whether he likes it or not. On Tuesday, the Poly Network team announced that it would invite him to serve as the chief security consultant, apparently to gain the expertise of the hacker. Additionally, the Poly Network team is ready to offer the hacker a reward of $500,000 even though he has previously refused any kind of payment. Poly Network refers to that hacker as “Mr. White Hat”. The Poly Network team said:
“Poly Network has no intention of holding Mr. White Hat legally responsible, as we are confident that Mr. White Hat will promptly return full control of the assets to Poly Network and its users. As we have stated in previous announcements and encrypted messages that have been made public, we are grateful for Mr. White Hat’s outstanding contribution to Poly Network’s security enhancements.”
On the 10th of August, the hack was reported by Polygon Network. Analysts in the firm discovered that approximately $610 million had been suspiciously removed from the Polygon network, Binance Smart Chain, and Ethereum. After that, the hacker contacted the Poly Network team and others with the help of embedded messages in Ethereum transactions. He had agreed to refund the funds. Later, the company stated that it had defined the attack as a “white hat behavior” and provided Mr. White hat with a reward of $500,000. Furthermore, the team regarding the future development of the project stated that they were “counting on more experts like Mr. White Hat to be involved since we believe that we share the vision to build a secure and robust distributed system”.
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The hacker has returned all funds except the $33 million frozen tethers (USDT). However, he has not yet returned the key to the multisig wallet Poly set up for the transfer. For the person responsible for the biggest hacks in years in DeFi, this is slightly out of the blue. This is because the targeted company itself is giving rewards and allegedly paid positions to its hacker. They did not yet publish the identity of the hacker. SlowMist, a Chinese cybersecurity firm posted an update on the hacker’s identity just after the news of the hack came. Their analysts determined the email address, IP address, and fingerprint of the attacker.
The firm said:
“We are grateful for Mr. White Hat’s outstanding contribution to Poly Network’s security enhancements. While there were certain misunderstandings in the beginning due to poor communication channels, we now understand Mr. White Hat’s vision for Defi and the crypto world, which is in line with Poly Network’s ambitions from the very beginning.”
Thousands of users are temporarily unable to use their funds. Moreover, the series of events that happened last week seems to be the result of additional attention from the media over the Poly Network. Google data shows that people’s interest in DeFi projects has reached the highest level in history on Wednesday. This was still much higher than since Poly was released last year.