Announcing the news on June 18, F2Pool said that the MiningPoolHub, the original owner of the address behind the transaction, has received back 2,079 ETH, or about $480,000. The mining pool specified the transaction ID showing that F2Pool has returned the amount to its original owner.
In order to complete the reimbursement transaction, the original address holder had to sign the new address using the private key of the original address. This is because the original address is now controlled by a hacker, F2Pool noted.
“Out of our humanitarian spirit, F2Pool has decided to return the transaction fee component of the transaction. It’s not feasible to return the fee back to the original sender address as the address is also now controlled by the hacker. Therefore, we agreed to send the fee to a new address provided by the original address owner after full verification of the address and owner.”
According to the statement from F2Pool, the rest 10% of the transaction fee, or 231 ETH ($53,000) will be distributed to miners. The amount will be used as compensation for zero-fee ETH mining during a seven day period from June 20 to June 26.
The transaction is part of a series of other abnormal ETH transactions
F2Pool’s decision to return 90% of the abnormal transaction fee comes soon after the mining pool reported on the troubled transaction on June 12. The suspicious transaction took place on June 11, involving an original 3,221 ETH transaction with an abnormal 2,310 transaction fee. On June 12, the original owner of the address behind the transaction reached out to F2Pool and explained that they became a victim of a malicious attack on their node wallet, causing them to lose combined 5,531 ETH, or $1.2 million.
The latest news is another twist in a series of recent abnormal ETH transactions involving two other mining pools — Etherchain and Sparkpool. As reported by Cointelegraph, the two mining pools consecutively encountered similar abnormal transactions, with both of them involving an incredible $2.6 million transaction fee.
In contrast to the recent F2Pool’s decision, Etherchain and Sparkpool decided to distribute the millions of dollars in gas fees they received from the strange transactions. Both pools emphasized that they have given sufficient time for the sender to get in touch with them. Sparkpool’s transaction took place on June 10, while Etherchain’s one followed on June 11.
This is not the first time when F2Pool returned the abnormal gas fee amount to the sender. In March 2019, the Chinese mining pool returned an abnormal transaction fee worth 2,100 ETH. The amount, worth around $300,000 at the time, was returned to the sender in full, F2Pool's global business director, Thomas Heller, tweeted on June 10.