Curious NFT sale – Exploitation and $700,000 collectable

Larva Labs, one of the most well-known non-fungible tokens (NFT)developers, became the victim of a massive attack early today when a hacker managed to create a “Meebits” NFT.

Worth over $700,000 USD, the NFT was minted as part of an exploit as the attacker known pseudonymously as 0xNietzsche created a way to create the Meebit  NFT by hacking the system to provide the smart contract he wanted. He teased the attack on Twitter, deleting tweets about the process he took to hack the system saying that they sounded arrogant or “douchey”. In a half-apology, he tweeted:

It was found that his attack “rerolled” Meebit mints he owned until the contracts gave him the Meebit he was after, which included the characteristics of each Meebit’s identity number. Since the information and data he needed was private knowledge, he could manipulate the information while making money in the process. According to an Etherscan address, 345 total transactions show hundred of failed attempts to create and obtain desirable (or valuable) Meebits. The only successful attempt according to the address shows Meebit 16647, which was bought for 200 ETH by Pranksy, a massive-scale collector.

Since the attack, Larva Labs has announced that their marketplace has been shit down and community minting has been suspended until the system security can be resolved. According to their Discord:

We have temporarily paused community minting and trading in the Meebits contract. The contract is safe, all Meebits are safe, and trading is working just fine.

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