Categories: Ethereum

EtherDelta Has Been Compromised Due to DNS Hijack

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It would almost seem as if anything Ethereum-related is bound to face some setbacks sooner or later. More specifically, we have seen a lot of Ethereum-related platforms and ICOs suffer major problems throughout 2017. The latest company to run into big trouble is EtherDelta, even though this issue has nothing to do with the Ethereum network itself. Instead, the company’s DNS server has apparently been compromised. It is advised not to use the website until this matter is fully resolved.

EtherDelta DNS is Hijacked

It is evident the cryptocurrency ecosystem has attracted a lot of hackers and other cybercriminals these past few years. Exchange platforms are attacked around the clock and wallet providers are not safe from harm either. It now seems EtherDelta is the next platform to suffer from a major setback. Although it is unclear whether or not any money has been lost, the hijacking of its DNS server will undoubtedly cost some people money in the process.

On Thursday, the team tweeted that there was reason to believe someone had compromised their DNS server. It wouldn’t be the first time something like this has happened in the cryptocurrency world, though. When an assailant successfully compromises a company’s DNS server, he or she can then redirect visitors to a malicious site and steal their login credentials and private keys in the process. It is unclear if this is what happened to EtherDelta, but it seems likely something has gone awry in this regard.

1/2 *IMPORTANT* we have reason to believe that there had been malicious attacks that temporarily gained access to @etherdelta DNS server. We are investigating this issue right now – in the meantime please *DONOT* use the current site.

— EtherDelta (@etherdelta) December 20, 2017

Although EtherDelta is not the most popular trading platform in the world, it still generates over US$10 million in daily volume most of the time. Its vast selection of cryptocurrencies and ERC20 tokens has made it rather popular among enthusiasts. If an assailant were to gain full access to its DNS server for even an hour, the damage they would cause could be rather substantial. Again, no one knows for sure whether money was stolen from users, but it seems likely to assume that it was.

It is evident EtherDelta has a solid business model, even though it is a centralized trading platform. We direly need decentralized exchanges and atomic swaps to take off sooner or later. Until that happens, unfortunately, issues like these will only become more frequent. Hacks and breaches are far too common in the world of crypto exchanges, and something will need to change sooner or later.

It will be interesting to see how all this affects the platform’s reputation moving forward. A DNS compromise is not something one can pull off all that easily. Someone on the team must have been sloppy with the login credentials associated with EtherDelta’s DNS information, and they were exposed in one way or another. It is evident that centralized solutions cannot be trusted in the long run.

Although 2017 hasn’t seen a ton of exchanges getting hacked or compromised, there has been some negative news as of late. The EtherDelta incident follows the bankruptcy of Korean exchange Youbit, which got hacked twice this year. There’s also the Nicehash heist which has yet to be resolved. Add the Parity bug on top of it all, and it is evident this industry is under attack from many different angles right now.


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