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Founder of NFT Game Loses 16 CryptoPunks and 'Bunch of ETH' to Scammer


decrypt.co 01 August 2021 18:30, UTC
Reading time: ~2 m

The founder of an NFT videogame lost 16 CryptoPunks “and a bunch of ETH” after falling prey to a scammer.

“I was lying in bed yesterday evening, mind was very foggy, casually browsing,” Stazie, the pseudonymous developer of NFT game Hedgie, tweeted yesterday. “The whole thing happened like a bad dream, almost felt like I was hypnotized.”

A scammer confusingly named “cryptopunksbot” posted in the CryptoPunk’s Discord server offering NFT investors the chance to win ten of the elusive NFT avatars to celebrate the project’s four-year anniversary.

Stazie took the poster up on the bogus offer, but that move eventually lost him 16 CryptoPunks, likely worth at least a million dollars.

2/9 I was lying in bed yesterday evening, mind was very foggy, casually browsing. Saw this bot in Discord and clicked the link. The site looked like Cryptopunks, and had a popup that looked like Metamask… pic.twitter.com/Hh4CLiRgmK

— stazie (@stazie) July 31, 2021

The link directed to LarvaLabs.io, a convincing copy of LarvaLabs.com, the project behind CryptoPunks. The scammy site had a popup “that looked like Metamask,” said Stazie, referring to the widely-used in-browser wallet.

The popup said that Metamask’s security had been compromised and requested Stazie’s seed phrase to restore access. Anyone who has access to the twelve-word phrase can drain the MetaMask wallet of funds.

CryptoPunk Prices Rise 53% in Week After Ethereum Whales' Feeding Frenzy

Stazie unwittingly sent his wallet’s seed phrase to the scammer. “There was zero critical thinking, and this is beyond idiotic. The punks and ETH was quickly gone before I could do anything,” he said.

The scammer’s wallet, which now contains 10 CryptoPunks, is visible on Larva Labs.

Today, the scammer sold 5 CryptoPunks for 149 ETH ($385,000).

And they transferred one CryptoPunk, which Stazie still uses as his profile picture on Twitter, to another wallet last night.

Stazie’s been in crypto since 2017 and considered himself familiar with the ways investors are swindled out of their crypto. He chalks his lapse of judgment at the time down to “being burnt out, tired and frustrated.”

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