The crypto phishing scammer who perpetrated some of the most notorious and expensive Web3 robberies claims to have closed business, claiming that it was “time to move on to something better.”
The scammer going by the nickname Monkey Drainer declared on March 1 that they would be closing down immediately, that all files, servers, and devices related to the drainer would be erased instantly, and that it will not return.
And to make matters worse, the con man gave advice to prospective young cyber criminals, advising them not to lose oneself in the pursuit of easy money and saying that only those “with the highest level of dedication should be in charge of large scale cybercrime organizations.
Monkey Drainer even suggested “Venom Drainer,” a “flawless” substitute for the service they once provided, and provided a link to a Telegram account for the service that had just been established the day before Monkey’s statement.
On March 1, the blockchain security company PeckShield tweeted that Monkey Drainer’s wallet had just made an attempt to conceal their cash by depositing almost 200 Ether, or $330,000, into the cryptocurrency mixing service Tornado Cash. In their main wallet, there were still 840 ETH, worth $1.4 million.
The cryptocurrency wallet-draining kit that Monkey sold is understood to collect a 30% “commission” on funds stolen from others’ use of the program, according to a March 1 tweet from blockchain security firm CertiK, which also posted Monkey’s message.
Wallet-draining kits from other suppliers have imitated the design, and CertiK cited other sellers who have already reported an increase in demand following Monkey Drainer’s announcement of its closure.
Monkey Drainer is believed to have been active since late 2022, during which time it is possible that up to $13 million worth of nonfungible tokens and cryptocurrencies have been stolen.
Several more items have been taken by other phishing scams and wallet-draining tools. Cryptocurrency worth $3.9 billion was lost to hacks, frauds, scams, and rug pulls in 2022, according to a report by Web3 bug bounty platform Immunefi.
The attack on Kevin Rose, the co-founder of the Moonbirds NFT collection, in January was arguably one of the most high-profile and high-value thefts by a wallet drainer in recent memory.
Once Rose authorized a bad signature on a phishing website that sent more than $1.1 million worth of his individual NFTs to the attacker, his wallet was empty.