Is Discord To Blame For NFT Hacks? Project Founder And Community Divided

Zinger Key Points
  • A recent hack saw the Discord for Bored Ape Yacht Club become compromised.
  • Instagram and Twitter have both been used as ways to hack into NFT collections.

More large non-fungible token communities are being targeted by hackers in an attempt to steal Ethereum ETH/USD from community members.

One of the big questions after hacks happen is who’s to blame. Here’s a look at the divide in the blame game.

What Happened: A recent hack saw the Discord for Bored Ape Yacht Club become compromised. The hack took control of a community manager’s account and pretended to be him.

A post was made offering a link for people to click to get a new NFT. A total of around 200 Ethereum worth of NFTs was stolen along with an additional 145 Ethereum stolen from accounts.

“Our Discord servers were briefly exploited today. The team caught and addressed it quickly. About 200 ETH worth of NFTs appear to have been impacted,” Bored Ape Yacht Club tweeted, while also asking for anyone impacted to email the team.

Is Discord to Blame? After the hack of the Bored Ape Yacht Club Discord, Yuga Labs co-founder "Gordon Goner" was quick to point the finger at Discord.

The Bored Ape Twitter account sent out a reminder tweet that it does “not offer surprise mints or giveaways.”

This is not the first time Bored Ape Yacht Club has been targeted. While Discord has been used several times, hackers have also gained access to the company’s Instagram, using a link to get users to connect their MetaMask to a scam wallet.

A recent Instagram hack saw 24 Bored Ape Yacht Club and 30 Mutant Ape Yacht Club NFTs potentially compromised, according to a CoinDesk report. Yuga Labs estimated four Bored Apes, six Mutant Apes and three Bored Ape Kennel Club NFTs were stolen, representing around $3 million in value.

Twitter Inc TWTR has also become the subject of hacks in the NFT sector with verified accounts taken over and then used to share links to mints that are close in name to recent hot mints such as when hundreds popped up after the Moonbirds NFT collection minted.

Other hackers take control of big accounts, including NFT artist Beeple, and share phishing links to get users to connect their wallets.

Twitter user OKHotshot, who is an on-chain analyst and audits NFT projects and Discord security, disagreed with the blame going solely on Discord.

“Co-founder of BAYC @GordonGoner insinuating Discord is to blame for their breach is a dangerous misunderstanding. Founders should put security first, not blame Discord for something that happened cause of user-error,” OKHotShot tweeted.

There have been 22 NFT Discords exploited in the month of June, according to OKHotShot. Many of the exploits were preventable according to the user.

Related Link: VeeCon 2022: First-Year Event Brings Alpha, Community, Education & NFT Lessons 

What’s Next: The recent exploits of Discord serve as an important warning to NFT holders and investors. Security and safety should always be top priority. Large projects rarely do surprise drops or giveaways without first announcing via Discord or social media that it is coming in the future.

If a link promises something that is too good to be true, it likely is.

“Don’t blame Discord for users getting socially engineered, having DMs open and clicking phishing links,” OKHotShot tweeted.

Discord users should be cautious before clicking on links inside a Discord and connecting their wallets. Creating a clean wallet to use for mints is another way to help secure accounts.

There will always be scammers and hackers in sectors that have large communities.

As discussed on Tuesday’s episode of Benzinga’s NFT show “The Roadmap,” Discord was originally created and used as a channel for the gaming community. The platform offered text messaging, voice and video chatting to allow gamers to play together.

Over time, Discord has become a preferred medium of NFT projects and communities as a way to connect with followers.

Discord was valued at $15 billion recently and received an investment from Sony Group Corp SONY in 2021. Discord also turned down an acquisition by Microsoft Corporation MSFT in 2021 that could have valued the company at around $10 billion.

As Discord works towards a potential IPO, the company may need to highlight that it is not entirely to blame for recent exploits or risk becoming synonymous with hacking for NFTs. 

Photo: Sergei Elagin via Shutterstock

Posted In: BeepleBored Ape Yacht ClubDiscordEthereumhackingInstagramMoonbirdsMutant Ape Yacht ClubNFTNFTsnon-fungible tokensYuga LabsCryptocurrencyNewsTop StoriesMarkets

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