Crypto Opinions & News Former Amazon security engineer pleads guilty to hacking crypto exchanges

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Level 76
Thread author
Honorary Member
Top Poster
Content Creator
Apr 24, 2016
Former Amazon security engineer Shakeeb Ahmed pleaded guilty this week to hacking and stealing over $12.3 million from two cryptocurrency exchanges in July 2022.

The two affected companies are Nirvana Finance, a decentralized crypto exchange, and an unnamed exchange on the Solana blockchain platform that Ahmed hacked using his blockchain audit and smart contract reverse engineering skills.

He first targeted the undisclosed crypto exchange by manipulating a smart contract to introduce false pricing data, generating roughly $9 million worth of inflated fees. Ahmed later withdrew the funds and offered to return all but $1.5 million on the condition that the exchange refrained from involving law enforcement.

Although not explicitly named by the Justice Department, the details of the attack match those of a July 2022 breach impacting the Crema Finance decentralized finance (DeFi) platform.

Shortly after this first hack, Ahmed exploited a Nirvana Finance DeFi protocol smart contract loophole to take a flash loan of ANA cryptocurrency tokens at a low price and sell it back at a higher rate, yielding him approximately $3.6 million.

Despite being offered a $300,000 bounty to return the stolen crypto assets, Ahmed kept everything he stole (representing all the funds owned by Nirvana Finance) after demanding $1.4 million and not reaching an agreement, forcing the exchange to shut down.


Level 10
Jun 6, 2017
We tend to trust the big tech companies with our data whilst forgetting they are operated by everyday people. …. and some people are rogues!

It's another reason to make sure any sensitive data uploaded on the cloud has client side encryption. You can't necessarily trust Amazon, Google or any other reputable company.

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