A hacker has stolen funds worth $182m (£139m) from stablecoin issuer Beanstalk in the latest exploit to affect the world of DeFi.
Beanstalk – a decentralised credit-based stablecoin protocol – lets users earn rewards by depositing capital in a central pool that is used to balance the value of the project’s Bean token at close to $1.
The attacker used borrowed money to deposit funds into the protocol which gained them enough governance rights to pass a proposal draining the Beanstalk of funds.
In an official statement the company thanked the project’s community which has “demonstrated incredible support for the project and provided numerous thoughtful ideas for a suitable path forward”.
However, developers struck a different tone on the protocol’s official discord server.
“Honestly not sure what to type. We are f***ed,” wrote a developer under the handle Publius.
“This project has not had any venture backing, so it is highly unlikely there is any sort of bail out coming.”
Interest in Decentralised Finance – the set of crypto projects which offer decentralised alternatives to traditional financial services – exploded in 2021. The total value locked in DeFi projects has almost tripled since the end of 2020, growing from $26.6bn to $76.6bn according to Defipulse.
Seeking to exploit the new technology hackers have pulled off a series of high value attacks targeting DeFi protocols. Last year DeFi users lost an estimated $10.5bn to hacks and scams, according to Elliptic.