An XRP holder has lost her entire holdings worth $2,600 to scammers operating a fake Chrome Ledger extension while at home recovering from coronavirus. The holder took to Reddit to report the incident, stating the hackers had stolen 14,889 XRP tokens directly from her ledger after installing the malware, reporting that at the time the thieves’ account held over $2.5 million in XRP and it was “clearly a large operation.”
The emergence of a fraudulent Chrome extension that allows access to Ledger devices was widely reported in early March, but clearly this investor had not come across these reports. Instead, while at home recovering from a coronavirus infection, she downloaded the software and entered her Ledger keywords, which granted hackers watching remotely the opportunity to empty the Ledger of over two years’ worth of saved up XRP.
In an act that has been echoed by hundreds of thousands of people worldwide, the author then watched on helplessly as her XRP disappeared from her account:
As I started to look into transferring the small amount of xrp I had recouped that morning, out of the corner of my eye, I watched as 14,889.740739 xrp vanished from our account. The entire process took less than 8 minutes. Due to the virus and shock, I believe I may have then fainted. I cant [sic] be sure.
Another Cautionary Tale
Ledger themselves have warned about the imposter extension, pleading with users never to share or enter their 24-word recovery code with a third party. The sad thing in this case is that technically the user was doing the right thing in storing her XRP on a hardware wallet, but unless there was an issue with the Ledger Live app she had no reason to download the extension as it wouldn’t offer any benefits over the official app anyway.
Unfortunately this has to go down as another case of someone not taking adequate security measures and acts as another in the litany of cautionary tales regarding safe storage of crypto.