Ethereum stalls amidst news of another DeFi exploit
The crypto market continues to face a slew of DeFi hacks all through Q1 2022, with such incidents up by 72% compared to 2021.
- Ethereum's valuation currently stands at AUD$493 billion (US$362 billion), representing a crypto market share of approximately 19%.
- Incidents related to decentralised finance (DeFi) hacks have surged by a whopping 72% when compared to 2021.
- Non-fungible token (NFT) transactions scaled up to an all-time high of AUD$2.3 billion last year.
Ethereum, the second-largest cryptocurrency by total market capitalisation, has continued to stay afloat around the AUD$4,000 range (US$3,000) despite touching a relative high of AUD$4,320 late yesterday evening. The ongoing volatility has resulted in the altcoin's monthly gains slipping to just +1.5%. At press time, ETH is trading at AUD$4,105.
This turbulent price action coincides with news of another major hacking incident to affect the crypto market. Earlier this week, blockchain security provider BlockSec noted that DeFi protocol ZEED had been on the receiving end of an attack. The miscreant exploited a vulnerability in how the protocol distributes rewards and minted additional tokens. However, in a surprising turn of events, the attacker fumbled a massive portion of their stolen funds, leaving behind approximately AUD$1.3 million (US$1 million) of stolen crypto in a smart contract designed to self-destruct automatically.
The DeFi market has seen a growing number of such incidents rear their ugly head in recent months. Over the first quarter of 2022 alone, more than AUD$1.77 billion (US$1.3 billion) worth of digital assets have been stolen from exchanges and platforms. These incidents are up by a whopping 72% compared to 2021.
Such cases not only malign the image of the crypto market as a whole but can also have a major impact on investor confidence, especially those individuals who may still be on the fence regarding the overall legitimacy of the digital asset industry.
Australian media giant goes all-in on NFTs
Reports say that Australian sports firm Basketball Forever has just launched its latest offering, an NFT-centric project called Hoop Hounds. It maximises its fan engagement efforts and provides token owners with real-world benefits. In recent months, there has been a major upsurge in the number of utility-focused NFT projects similar to Bored Ape Yacht Club and Top Shot, where token owners are provided with access to real-world events and products in lieu of their purchases.
NFTs have continued to generate a lot of interest globally, with reports suggesting that over the course of 2021 alone, these offerings have been able to record transactions in excess of US$17 billion. It stands to reason that if NFTs are able to maintain current levels of interest, they could help drive the value of the digital asset market even higher.
Disclosure: The author owns a range of cryptocurrencies at the time of writing.