A hacker returned $17.4 million worth of Ethereum to the victim
For reasons unknown, a hacker decided to return millions of dollars – twice.
CoinDash was a project laden with bad luck and perhaps slightly lacking network security. An unknown hacker compromised the website ahead of its July 2017 ICO and replaced the ICO wallet address with a new one. Then they just sat back and watched 41,000 ETH, worth about US$7 million at the time, pour into their wallet.
But then two months later, the unthinkable happened. The hacker returned about $3 million of ETH into the real CoinDash wallet. With ETH's price rise, the total heist was then worth over $10 million.
At the time, CoinDash CEO Alon Muroch explained that his company had "not been contacted by the hacker, or anyone related to the hacker," and couldn't imagine why they would have returned the stolen funds.
"A hacker steals a lot of money and out of the blue returns some of it...it's truly incredible, this industry," Muroch said.
Now the unthinkable has happened again, but with bigger numbers. The same hacker just deposited 20,000 ETH worth $17.4 million, almost half the total amount stolen, back into the CoinDash wallet.
For those keeping track, the hacker siphoned off about a quarter of the total amount raised in the ICO, while pocketing roughly around $9 million worth of ETH at today's prices.
A cynical person might reckon that the most likely explanation is that someone involved in the CoinDash project, with website access, wanted to skim a few million dollars for themselves without destroying the entire project.
Either that or a hacker with a heart of gold decided to spend half a year as an impromptu investment manager for CoinDash, very deliberately not spending too much of their takings and depositing a nice windfall the very day before the platform is set to go live.
Skimming a bit of money for themselves might be a good precaution for a team that's not 100% sure about their product – the way every single ICO developer should be. The vast majority of ICOs are dead in the water less than a year after launch, so trepidation is probably the most sensible mood for any crypto developer.
CoinDash (official website) is being positioned as a social trading platform where beginners can mirror the trading patterns of more experienced users.
CoinDash could probably be called the eToro of cryptocurrency, if eToro wasn't already the eToro of cryptocurrency.
But unlike eToro, CoinDash has its very own token and ICO. This token is used to pay the fees incurred on the CoinDash platform, while contributors can be paid with the CoinDash token.
"Every feature in the CoinDash platform that gives any financial value to its users will require them to pay a fee," the CoinDash whitepaper explains. "Any user who facilitates the use of a feature which in turn gives financial value will be entitled to a payment."
By contrast, eToro lets contributors be rewarded more directly with real money, while its users don't have to pay fees for everything. eToro derives its profits from trading spreads instead. Plus eToro also offers stock, CFD, commodity and forex trading as well as a wide range of cryptocurrencies.
Disclosure: At the time of writing the author holds ETH, IOTA, ICX, VEN, XLM, SALT and BTC.