© Igor Faun
In a confusing series of events, an unusual transaction caught the attention of the cryptocurrency community and AntPool, one of the leading mining pools. A user accidentally paid a staggering $3 million in transaction fees to send $2.1 million worth of Bitcoin. The transaction, processed in block number 818,087, was flagged by AntPool’s risk control system due to exorbitant gas fees, equivalent to 83 BTC, and the funds were subsequently frozen.
The incident occurred when a user, known by X (formerly Twitter) handle “83_5BTC”, attempted to transfer 139 BTC to a new cold wallet. After the transfer, the user claimed that their wallet had been hacked, suggesting that an automated script with flawed fee calculations may have been responsible. This prompted a post-incident analysis by Mononaut, an anonymous developer behind Mempool, who confirmed the user’s claims by signing the message. Mononaut emphasized the possibility of a security compromise, pointing out that attackers could have used a replacement-by-fee (RBF) tactic to increase transaction fees and accelerate the theft of funds. Analysis points to weak wallet security practices, such as usage Low-entropy wallets, like brain wallets, are potential vulnerabilities.
In response to the incident, AntPool has put in place steps for the original owner to reclaim their money. Owners are required to verify their identity using signature tools such as Electrum or Bitcoin Core using their private key. This process must be completed before December 10 to ensure the rightful owner can recover the property.
The costly mistake serves as a cautionary tale for Bitcoin users, highlighting the importance of strong security measures and the need to be vigilant when setting transaction fees. It also showcases proactive measures taken by mining pools such as AntPool to monitor and react to unusual activities on the blockchain.
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