MetaMask Completes Roll-Out Of Blockaid Security Alerts

MetaMask estimates crypto users lost $1.7B to exploits and phishing scams in 2023.

By: Samuel Haig Loading...

MetaMask Completes Roll-Out Of Blockaid Security Alerts

MetaMask has completed an integration with Blockaid to provide security alerts to its users across multiple networks by default.

Announced on Feb. 20, MetaMask users will now automatically receive security alerts when asked to approve malicious transactions. MetaMask said the move is intended to protect against the increasing prevalence of thefts and scams targeting web3 wallet users, estimating that $1.7B was stolen, hacked, or phished from crypto users in 2023.

“This increased security layer will mitigate a major deterrent for new crypto users, fostering a new level of crypto adoption,” MetaMask said. “In 2024, MetaMask estimates that the privacy-preserving security alerts will prevent hundreds of millions worth of assets from being stolen.”

The upgrade follows a beta phase trialing Blockaid’s alert service from Oct. 31. The feature was then integrated for Ethereum mainnet transactions on Jan. 29, and is now live on Linea, BNB Chain, Polygon, Arbitrum, Optimism, and Avalanche as well.

MetaMask is seeking to bolster its security features amid growing adoption as the crypto markets heat up. MetaMask reported a 55% increase in monthly active users between September 2023 and January 2024.

The move also comes as MetaMask is seeking to integrate with mainstream financial platforms. On Feb. 6. MetaMask teamed up with Robinhood, the popular trading app with more than 10M monthly clients, allowing Robinhood's users to directly fund their MetaMask accounts.

MetaMask also launched its Buy Crypto feature last year, teaming up with banks and credit card companies servicing 189 countries to enable fiat onboarding to crypto. MetaMask also integrated with Apple Pay and PayPal in 2022.

Phishing attacks on the rise

In a January report, Scam Sniffer, a web3 security firm estimated that 324,000 victims lost $295.5M to phishing attacks. The largest incident saw a single user lose $24M to a wallet drainer.

The report noted that losses to phishing consistently rose throughout 2023, with hackers opportunistically seeking to take advantage of significant market events. Scam Sniffer said $7M was stolen on March 11 from Circle impersonators as the USDC stablecoin depegged, followed by a high volume of losses incurred around the time of Arbitrum’s highly-anticipated airdrop that same month.

“Over the past year, phishing activities have steadily increased each month with phishing scammers employing more sophisticated tactics to evade security measures,” the report said.

Web3 losses to phishing attacks throughout 2023. Source: Scam Sniffer.