Friday, September 30, 2022

Harmony Protocol Offers An “Insulting” Bounty of $1 Million To Attacker

Layer-1 blockchain, Harmony, has offered to give $1 million as a bounty to the attacker from last week’s Horizon Bridge hack. However, the bounty only represents 1% of the total amount of $100 million worth of crypto that was stolen. According to the announcement that Harmony shared via its Twitter page, the team also assures that as long as funds are safely returned, then it would be pressing no criminal charges against the attacker.

Modest bounty raises concerns about Harmony blockchain

Meanwhile, serious concerns are being raised regarding the rationale behind committing such a little amount of bounty. Various stakeholders and onlookers are weighing in on the situation, noting how the bounty may be too small to move the attacker to return the stolen funds. 

Firstly, the concerns look to be borne out of comparison with other high-profile attacks that happened earlier in the year. And as it stands, Harmony may be offering the lowest amount of bounty seen so far in 2022. For instance, in May, the Rari Fuse attacker was offered about 12% of the total amount stolen. Also, recall that the Beanstalk Finance team offered about $7.6 million to its protocol attacker in April. That was 10% of the total amount exploited at the time.

Secondly, it certainly looks like Harmony may not be doing its best to secure the funds. No wonder a crypto trader identified as Degen Spartan called it an “insulting amount.” The trader also accused the Harmony blockchain team of putting up an act so as not to be legally liable.

Any chances of recovery?

Interestingly, Harmony is not the first project to offer a seemingly ridiculous bounty in terms of the entire amount stolen. So, there may be hope after all. 

Recall that back in 2021, the Poly Network interoperability platform lost about $610 million to a hack. However, the team could only offer a $500,000 bounty at the time. That was even lesser than what Harmony is offering now, as it represented only 0.08% of the total stolen. Although the offer was rejected, the funds were still returned in the end.

As of publication, the Horizon Bridge hacker is yet to make any moves to indicate a change of heart.

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