Update: Blockchain transactions show that all of the funds have now been returned.
There have been all sorts of swindles, scams and rug pulls in the rapidly developing market for non-fungible tokens, or NFTs. But this one stands out as rather peculiar.
For a start, the NFT sale itself was quite strange. The whole idea was based around a recent meme on crypto Twitter, that of the Kia Sedona brand of car (the joke being that the Kia Sedona is a type of hard money). A group of 10 anonymous individuals who were behind the sale created a jazzy website and branded it “Jay Pegs Auto Mart," as a report by Protos first revealed. (It was not affiliated with the car manufacturer in any way.)
The sale was for DONA reservation tokens. These could be purchased on decentralized exchange SushiSwap’s token sale platform Miso. Each DONA token purchased in the sale could be swapped for one 2007 Kia Sedona NFT — out of a possible 10,000.
And the token sale went well. It raised 864.8 in ether (ETH), worth $3.1 million. But what the anonymous team of shadowy super coders (another meme) didn’t expect to happen, when it chose to use Miso, was for all of its funds to be whisked away.
According to SushiSwap CTO Joseph Delong, an anonymous contractor inserted malicious code into the Miso platform, changing the destination address for all of the incoming funds in the token sale to their own address. Delong said that the Jay Pegs Auto Mart sale was the only one affected and that all the funds raised were stolen.
Delong added that SushiSwap has asked crypto exchanges Binance and FTX to identify the hacker — by providing their KYC information — but they have not done so. He said that if the funds weren’t returned by 8 AM ET, the platform has instructed Stephen Palley, a partner at legal firm Anderson Kill to file a complaint with the FBI.
On the plus side, the Jay Pegs Auto Mart Twitter account reassured buyers that — even though it didn't raise any money — it will still be handing out the Kia Sedona NFTs.
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