Fiasco NFT – $34 Million Locked Into a Smart Contract Forever

The NFT market can no longer be reduced to a simple anecdote of a career in the cryptocurrency sector. Just look at the success of some of the collections launched at the heart of this bear market. A reality that clearly concerns speculators more than real collectors, who sometimes make you wonder if they really exist. All this fueled by this euphoria that is still felt by many mints who promise to be the next BAYC every time. But some operations turn out to be shorter than others, as in the case of the Akutars collection which caused a real fiasco.

The proliferation of new collections of multi-rarity NFTs does not appear to be in crisis. Because their numbers are constantly increasing, between all or obvious scams and VIP projects that are already too expensive even before they are mint. Like, for example, the recent launch late last week of the now famous Moonbirds, at an initial retail price of 2.5 ETH (about $7600). And at the time of writing this article, the reserve price had already been set at 36 ETH (about $100,000) for Pixelated Owls printed in 10,000 copies.

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And while everyone has their own opinion about these types of collections, the madness is in full swing. With an NFT market that its enthusiasts say has almost become more interesting to trade than cryptocurrencies. And at least for those who know how to benefit from whitelists and other rock bottom prices. And certainly not for the buyer of Jack Dorsey’s very first tweet, whose bid still isn’t over $30,000 on Opensea. With this reality in mind: a fiasco is always possible.

Akutars – The Fasco Version of the NFT Coin

A simple line should be written on the front of all crypto projects: “Never confuse speed with haste.” Because the speed at which the cryptocurrency sector is developing sometimes makes the community dizzy. To the point where you make mistakes that can quickly turn out to be catastrophic. With for once a principle of “code is law” whose cold truth is essential, without possible negotiation. And this second sentence to keep in mind for developers: “one bug bounty is better than two, that’s fine. A sad reality that the Akutars project just ran into this weekend.

Indeed, last Friday would be the day of the much anticipated launch of the Akutars collection. A 3D avatar version of the character Aku, created last year by artist and former baseball player Micah Johnson. A project part of a strong social dynamic, with the distribution of funds to charities. And invented a little black boy to answer this simple question from Micah Johnson’s cousin to his mother: “Can astronauts be black?” †

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But apparently nothing went as planned. And what was supposed to be the coin of 15,000 avatars with random rarities turned into a fiasco. This is due to a bug discovered in the code of the smart contract that is supposed to handle this operation. And then everything goes wrong…

Akutars – A bug in the matrix

It all started a few hours after the official launch of the first sale of this Akutars collection. An operation that is the basis of a few malfunctions that are (too) often classic in this type of procedure. With the particularity that it is based on a Dutch auction system, whose base price (3.5 ETH) should gradually decrease until a buyer is found. But soon a developer responding to the pseudonym Hasan came to warn of the discovery of a flaw in the smart contract’s code. The only response, from those responsible for the project, was an assurance that his diagnosis was incorrect.

Shortly afterwards, however, an attack was indeed carried out according to the precise modus operandi revealed by Hasan. All this by an anonymous USER221 whose action resulted in the blocking of all operations related to auctions† All of this with a note saying, “Please offer a bug bounty on your contracts or at least have them checked. And then another comment written in an Ethereum transaction. The latter explained that the intent was not to cause this block, but simply to force the developers of the project to recognize the error.

Well, that’s funny, I wasn’t going to exploit that contract, lol. Otherwise I would not have used Coinbase. Once you publicly acknowledge that the exploit exists, I will remove the block immediately.


Akutars – Attack + bug = $34M block

And the famous USER221 has indeed kept his promises by rebooting the machine after taking his comments into account (and maybe a bug bonus was paid). But it was without counting on the lightness with which this code was clearly written. Because after this reboot, and of course without any correlation, a new problem appeared. This time in relation to the chronological numbering of the coins of these NFTs. Some are not taken into account when validating a transaction on the Ethereum network. And since the contract required the numbers to be aligned correctly to allow recordings…everything was blocked again.

But this with the minor difference that in the latter case, the block represents the sum of 11,539 ETH (about $34 million). And with the problematic peculiarity of having all these funds “forever” locked up in some sort of digital black hole. Because project managers can no longer intervene in the smart contract, which is now spiraling out of control. And at the same time, the owners of Akutar Coin Pass can no longer claim the initially foreseen refund for up to 0.5 ETH. oops…

Akutars – A new launch planned

The developers of the Akutars project claim that: this second problem is unrelated to the first action of USER211† The latter just wanted “to draw attention to the best practices to be adopted by popular projects. ” Right away micha johnson apologized to its collectors for refusing to pay due attention to the issued warnings. While ensuring that holders of Akutar Coin Pass will be repaid from the funds held by the treasury of the original Aku NFT project.

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With the prospect of setting up a second smart contract, this time presented as “reviewed and reviewed” by several developers. And, of course, another launch date would be at the beginning of the week. At least this is what the latter suggests. Updating published a few hours ago on the project’s official Twitter account. Let’s hope everything will be better this time.

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