Ripple co-founder hacked for 213 million XRP worth $113 million

abdelaziz Fathi

Ripple co-founder Chris Larsen revealed on Wednesday that there had been “unauthorized access” to some of his personal XRP accounts.

This announcement came in response to findings by crypto investigator ZachXBT, who suggested that Ripple might have been hacked, resulting in the potential loss of 213 million XRP, equivalent to $112.5 million.

Larsen clarified that the security breach was confined to his personal XRP accounts and did not affect Ripple itself. Swift action was taken to identify and address the issue promptly. Larsen stated, “We were quickly able to catch the problem and notify exchanges to freeze the affected addresses. Law enforcement is already involved.”

The initial observation of the suspicious outflow was made by ZachXBT, who initially attributed it to a potential breach at Ripple. The incident involved eight outgoing transactions on January 30, ranging from 400,000 XRP (roughly $200,000) to 69.7 million XRP. The transferred funds were directed to several cryptocurrency exchanges, including MEXC, Gate, Binance, Kraken, OKX, HTX, and HitBTC.

In response to the security concerns, XRP experienced a 4.1% decline, falling to $0.50.

Earlier this month, Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse, speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, denied rumors about pursuing an initial public offering (IPO) in the United States due to what he perceives as a “hostile” regulatory environment.

Garlinghouse highlighted the challenges faced by companies like Coinbase, which had its S-1 prospectus (a form filed with the SEC detailing a company’s business operations and financials before an IPO) approved, only to later face legal actions from the SEC. This situation, he noted, reflects the complexities and uncertainties crypto-related businesses face when interacting with U.S. securities regulators.

Ripple’s own ongoing lawsuit with the SEC, which began in 2020, has been a major factor in delaying its IPO plans. Garlinghouse confirmed that while Ripple had considered listing in jurisdictions with clearer regulatory frameworks, these plans are currently on hold. He added that Ripple does not urgently need to raise capital through an IPO, as the company has been cash flow positive for the past couple of years.

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