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Cryptogambling / NFT trader earns $1.5 million by outsmarting bot on Blur

NFT trader earns $1.5 million by outsmarting bot on Blur

Publish Date: 08/08/2023
Stock Photo, tags: nft trader $1.5 - pbs.twimg.com

Stock Photo – pbs.twimg.com

NFT trader and content creator Hanwe Chang has earned 800 ETH (approximately $1.5 million) by deceiving a bot into purchasing his NFTs at inflated prices.

Over the weekend, Chang posted on the social media platform X, explaining that a bot was replicating all his NFT bids on Blur, a new leading NFT marketplace.

“Noticed that someone’s bot was copying my bids on Blur, so I decided to trick him… Made 800 ETH profit thanksss,” Chang wrote, along with a screenshot displaying 12 transactions of NFTs from the Azuki collection, each selling for 50 ETH ($91,500).

On Saturday, 12 Azuki NFTs with the background color “Off White A” were sold simultaneously. The previous sale of an Azuki NFT with the same background was for a much lower price, around $9,000.

Chang appears to have stored the NFTs in a single wallet. After completing the trades, he sent a significant portion of the profits to a wallet labeled “hanwe.eth” using the Ethereum Name Service, as reported by Ethercan.

The bot’s owner, going by the handle “elizab.eth,” admitted on X that the funds were stolen from their bot. They proposed a deal to Hanwe, offering him 10 percent of the funds if he agreed to return the rest.

Dave III, a pseudonymous NFT influencer, criticized Chang’s actions, saying it wasn’t wise and warning others against “bragging about committing fraud.” He further described Chang’s trick as an “illegal market activity.”

“Placing bids you don’t want accepted solely to trigger other bids is the illegal part,” Dave III elaborated.

Some disagreed with Dave III’s accusation and pointed out that elizab.eth was simply outsmarted, while Delphi Labs general counsel Gabriel Shapiro said the situation could prompt a potential legal action.

“I unironically think [elizab.eth] might have good legal claims to get their ETH back from the bot ‘trick’ if they hire a skilled litigator,” he said on X.

However, Shapiro recognized that the situation’s legal aspects are more “nuanced.”

Blur’s trading volume surged this year with gamified incentives for trade-related activity. Hanwe is known for bidding on NFTs by trait, as seen on Blur’s leaderboards. Profile picture NFTs, like those from the Azuki collection, have unique qualities like eye color or clothing, affecting their value based on rarities.

Blur surpasses OpenSea

According to data from DappRadar, Blur generated $460 million in Ethereum NFT trades earlier this year, a 361 percent increase compared to the previous period.

In contrast, OpenSea saw a 12 percent rise in trading volume, reaching $107 million during the same time frame. The No. 3 platform, X2Y2, recorded only $11 million in trades during that period.

CryptoSlam recently reported a 155 percent week-over-week rise in Ethereum NFT trading volume. This increase aligns with Blur’s distribution of its BLUR governance token to NFT traders who had earned rewards through the marketplace and other trades before Blur’s launch.

BLUR currently holds a market cap of $466 million, priced at $1.20 per unit. Some NFT collectors reinvested their airdropped funds into purchasing NFTs, primarily using Blur as the platform to buy and sell NFTs, as indicated by the market data.

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