Optimism exploiter claims willingness to return 18 million OP tokens


Optimism’s hacker today claimed to be open to returning 18 million Optimism (OP) tokens stolen on Thursday morning.

In an on-chain message sent to Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin’s Optimism address, the unknown perpetrator offered conditionally to return the exploited tokens.

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On Thursday, the hacker stole 20 million OP tokens (worth more than $30 million) after the Optimism development team transferred them to a multi-signature wallet address presumed to be controlled by a market-making company called Wintermute.

Still, Wintermute did not have control over the address on the Optimism Layer 2 network and the perpetrator found a way to claim the tokens. Later, the hacker sold 1 million of them and sent another 1 million to an Optimism address believed to be owned by Buterin.

Earlier, the Wintermute team had requested that the exploiter return the 19 million tokens to a specific return address, and offered assurances that no legal action would be taken if this was done.

optimism hacker

Optimism hacker’s on-chain message to Vitalik Buterin (source: Etherscan)

In the on-chain message to Vitalik today, the hacker offered to make the transfer to the return address, on condition that Buterin make the first move and transfer the 1 million OP tokens he had been sent in order to verify the genuineness of the return address.

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“Hello, Vitalik, I believe in you, just want to know your opinion on this. BTW, help to verify the return address and I will return the remaining after you,” the exploiter wrote.

The hacker also wrote: “And hello Wintermute, sorry, I only have 18M and this is what I can return. Stay Optimistic.”

© 2022 The Block Crypto, Inc. All Rights Reserved. This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.


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