Tuesday, July 16, 2024

Telegram-Backed TON Blockchain Under Threat of Phishing Attacks, Experts Warn


The Web3 sector is generally considered to have a high exposure to cyber-attacks and hacks, but Telegram-backed The Open Network (TON) blockchain has particularly found itself in trouble. As per blockchain security firm SlowMist, the TON blockchain faces a high risk of phishing attacks. The entire TON ecosystem is currently under threat, which could negatively impact the blockchain’s near future plans, especially at a time when the project admittedly aims to onboard 500 million users on-chain by 2028.

What do cyber experts say?

Yu Xian, the founder of SlowMist, alerted the team behind the TON blockchain about looming phishing threats to the network on June 23. In phishing attacks, the actor entices potential victims into sharing their private information – personal as well as financial – in order to exploit the information and steal funds.

“There are more and more phishing activities in the TON ecosystem. The Telegram ecosystem is too free, and many phishing links (or bot forms) are spread through message groups, airdrops and other deceptive methods,” Xian posted through his Twitter account that goes by the handle @evilcos.

Since TON users can link their wallets to their Telegram accounts, Xian fears that if the integrity of TON-linked wallets is violated, it could expose the affected users’ private messages as well.

The expert believes that the developers behind the TON blockchain should start taking measures to mitigate the situation.

As per Chainalysis, 2022 saw victims lose an estimated $516.8 million (roughly Rs. 4,314 crore) to crypto phishing scams. In 2023, this number stood at $374.6 million (roughly Rs. 3,127 crore) through November.

As of now, TON has not reacted to the development.

Growth of TON

For Telegram founders, the Durov brothers, the idea for The Open Network first took shape around 2018. Later in 2022, the TON mainnet went fully live and operational.

Just recently, the TON coin was listed on Binance for deposits and withdrawals. At the time of writing, TON was trading at $7.31 (roughly Rs. 610) on CoinMarketCap.

Since 2022, Web3 investment company DWF Labs infused $10 million (roughly Rs. 80 crore) in the Layer-1 blockchain network. Around the same time, Telegram said it would auction rare usernames on the TON marketplace.

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