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Seth Green Buys Back Stolen BAYC for $260K, Will Resume TV Show

2 mins
Updated by Andrew Rossow
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In Brief

  • Seth Green had to buy back one of his stolen NFTs after a hacker refused to return them.
  • Green paid a $260,000 ransom to recover his Bored Ape #8398.
  • He is now able to resume working on the television show.
  • promo

Actor Seth Green has recovered his stolen Bored Ape Yacht Club NFT after paying a $260,000 ransom.

After losing four NFTs from popular collections like the Bored Ape Yacht Club, Doodles, and Mutant Ape Yacht Club, actor and comedian Seth Green was in a pickle.

Known for his movie roles in the “Italian Job” and “Austin Powers”, as well as television roles in “Family Guy” and “Robot Chicken,” Green was set to use the intellectual property from Bored Ape NFT #8398 in a new television series, “White Horse Tavern,” where BAYC #8398 is a bartender named Fred Simian.

In a previous interview, Green said that he had bought the ape in July 2021, and had spent several months developing the story and character of BAYC #8398.

Days before the show was scheduled to go on air, the NFT was one of four stolen through a phishing attack, and subsequently listed on OpenSea.

The thief initially claimed he had bought the NFT fair and square, with no inkling to return it, Buzzfeed News reported. With his television show on the line, Green subsequently threatened legal action.

Intellectual property prevented Green from releasing the show

Unbeknownst to many, the legal rights to license and distribute Bored Ape NFTs are forfeited in the event an NFT is stolen. After an unsuccessful appeal to the person responsible for the theft, Green had to buy the NFT back for 165 ETH ($260,000) to reclaim his legal right to the IP, telling BuzzFeed News in a Twitter Spaces conversation that the NFT “is home.”

Now in possession of the NFT, Green can proceed with the release of the show. By owning the NFT, Green eliminates major networks, creating characters that could be turned into NFTs in the future.

How the NFTs got stolen

Green fell prey to a phishing scam in May 2022 while attempting to purchase a Gutter Clone NFT, a knockoff of Gutter Cats, a popular NFT collection. In connecting a crypto wallet, the first step to buying an NFT on most marketplaces, Green discovered that the website to buy the Gutter Clone NFTs was fake.

“Phishing link looked clean,” he admitted.

Phishing scams trick users into revealing sensitive information, such as usernames and passwords, or encourage them to connect to bogus websites. The hacker then attempts to change the user’s log-in credentials to access the funds in a user’s crypto wallet. Funds are then transferred to the hacker’s wallet.

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David Thomas
David Thomas graduated from the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal in Durban, South Africa, with an Honors degree in electronic engineering. He worked as an engineer for eight years, developing software for industrial processes at South African automation specialist Autotronix (Pty) Ltd., mining control systems for AngloGold Ashanti, and consumer products at Inhep Digital Security, a domestic security company wholly owned by Swedish conglomerate Assa Abloy. He has experience writing software in C,...