The hacker who stole more than $600 million worth of cryptocurrency from Poly Network on Tuesday—and who had returned $342 million of it as of this morning— is communicating with his victims via a string of notes attached to the transactions being conducted to return the money. The hacker has compared themselves to Batman in one of their transactions with the company, along with several other interesting statements. (You can see a full list of the back-and-forth messages here.)
A transaction logged by Etherscan, which provides a one-click tool that can be used to view the transaction's input data as plain text, contained the following message (which we've converted from all-caps to sentence case for legibility's sake):
"To crypto noobs: in the defi world, code is law. Then who is the arbitrator? We, the hackers, are the armed forces. If you are given weapons and guarding billions from the crowd while being _anonymous_, will you be a terrorist or the batman?"
The hacker also shared messages intended for supporters who sent cryptocurrency to them, people asking them for some of their haul, and decentralized finance and security noobs in addition to their back-and-forth with Poly Network itself.
That exchange was most notable because the hacker claimed, "it would have been a billion hack if I had moved remaining shitcoins!" and said they were "not so interested in money."
Poly Network responded with an offer of a security bounty in exchange for the remaining assets, but the hacker said, "what if I make a new token and let the [Decentralized Autonomous Organization] decide where the tokens go" in response.
That's when Poly Network tried another tack with the security bounty: "The decision made by DAO can't changed [sic] the fact that the assets are stolen from crypto believers," the company said. "We want to offer a security bounty and we hope it will be remembered as the biggest white hat hack in the history."
But the hacker didn't want that. "It's already a legend to win so much fortune," they said. "It will be an eternal legend to save the world. I made the decision, no more DAO." (Which, admittedly, reads better in the original all-caps message.)
The messages continued from there. So far, the hacker's returned $342 million of their stolen funds, according to Poly Network, which said this morning that the remaining $268 million worth of cryptocurrency is on the Ethereum blockchain.