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Bitcoin Scams

SIM Hijacking: How One Group Of Hackers Got Away With $5 Million Worth Of BTC



The newest case about SIM hijacking makes cryptojacking a business for babies. According to the news reported by Motherboard, a 20-year old college student from Boston, Massachusetts got arrested this month on charges of being part of a group that hacked cellphone numbers before stealing more than $5 million USD in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

As the source reported, the number of cell phone numbers that one Bostonian named Joel Ortiz and his accomplices hacked in a technique known as SIM swapping (hijacking) counted about 40.

The real power of SIM hijacking, in this case, is to trick the mobile operators into transferring the phone number of a target to a SIM card that is controlled by the criminal. As soon as the criminals obtain the numbers, they can reset the passwords before accessing the online accounts of their victims.

The goal for Ortiz was to target players in the blockchain and cryptocurrency fields. This is how they stole over $1.5 million from one blockchain entrepreneur during Consensus 2018 which took place in May. According to court documents, once Ortiz took control of the cellphone of the victim, he reset the password of his email address and gained access to his BTC holdings.

What ‘lured’ the police to arrest Ortiz was one unnamed victim reporting to the police that his cell phone number had been stolen. Obviously, he was a victim of Ortiz earlier this year. After partnering with the telecommunications giant AT&T, the police located the numbers of the phones the SIM hijacker had been using and gained access to the email accounts linked to them – as evidence of potential criminal activity.

Ortiz used Binance, Bittrex, and Coinbase to obtain information and move more than $1 million worth of cryptocurrencies.

Earlier this year, the FBI released a statement for what is labeled as ‘tech support fraud’. In it, the FBI stated:

“Criminals pose as virtual currency support. Victims contact fraudulent virtual currency support numbers usually located via open source searches. The fraudulent support asks for access to the victim’s virtual currency wallet and transfers the victim’s virtual currency to another wallet for temporary holding during maintenance. The virtual currency is never returned to the victim, and the criminal ceases all communication,”

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Bitcoin Scams

Binance Prevents Losses By Freezing The Stolen Funds By Cryptopia Hacker

In the latest crypto news, we are focusing on a smart move done by the Binance team recently, with which the leading exchange managed to freeze some of the funds that were stolen from the crypto exchange Cryptopia during the high-profile hack which occurred earlier this week. The CEO of Binance, Changpeng Zhao, has announced this news in a tweet on Wednesday, saying the following: Zhao also questioned why do attackers keep on sending the stolen funds to Binance, mostly because the word spreads quickly and the crypto exchanges are not shy about halting the flow of stolen funds. As Cryptopia tweeted, on the other hand, the breach occurred on Monday and caused the exchange to suffer from "significant losses." In numbers, this translates to at least $2.4 million worth of Ethereum (ETH) moved to several unknown wallets - as well as about $1.2 million worth of Centrality (CENNZ). Even though it is still unclear who is behind the hack, some people believe that Cryptopia may have made the transfers for security reasons. The exchange commented: What's most interesting in the case is that one day before this hack, Zhao posted a message on Twitter where he advised crypto holders to store their holdings on exchanges instead of personal storage devices such as USB drives or hardware wallets. The tweet was not that well received by the audience, giving Zhao comments about the risk of storing cryptocurrency on "reputable" exchanges like Binance.
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Bitcoin Scams

Using A Fake BBC News Page, Cybercriminals Managed To Generate Bitcoin

According to research conducted by a British security researcher, he found out that cybercriminals came up with a new scam idea to generate money by deceiving the users on the internet. In today’s bitcoin news we will see how the scam works. The criminals made money by webpage views after they used BBC’s news webpage as a tool to reroute the users to the main website that will generate bitcoin for the criminals. Actually, the scam works by sending a very convincing email to a certain internet user with a link that directs the users directly to the website that looked exactly like BBC News. When the users open the email, they get directed to multiple fake BBC websites which generated a certain amount of bitcoin per page view. This method isn’t a new one. Spoofing has been around many years when many other fraudsters tried to use it as a method to force users to provide confidential information. The difference between the old ones and this spoofing method is the purpose of the scam. Rather than forcing the users to download malware, the scammers only make the users visit affiliate sites. The criminals used the method of ‘’typosquatting’’ which happens when a URL of a legitimate website is misspelled or a few other letters or characters are added to the URL which will direct the user to a completely different website. To make the scam even more convincing, the criminals sent out emails from alleged familiar contacts who have had their email addresses compromised.
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Bitcoin Scams

New Torrent Malware Posing As Movie File Can Replace BTC & ETH Addresses: Researcher

In the latest Bitcoin news, we are focusing on the scams - particularly one malware - which is posing as a movie file on the torrent website The Pirate Bay (TPB) and manipulating web pages and replacing Bitcoin (BTC) and Ether (ETH) addresses, according to the computing magazine Bleeping Computer and its research on January 12th. The malware which is originally thought to inject advertising on Google and in search results is found to perform multiple actions, some of which were discovered by the publication's own researcher Lawrence Abrams.
“What appeared to be an ad-injector into the main Google search page turned out to be only the tip of the iceberg,” the researchers warned.
The file also contains malicious code posing as a movie file on TPB, specifically for the movie "The Girl In The Spider's Web." In reality, the malware is also able to swap out cryptocurrency wallet addresses for ones owned by the attacker. This occurs when users copy and paste using the Ctrl + C function on Windows PCs and has appeared previously in other malware.
“This tactic does not show any sign that could alert the user of the trick. Because the wallets are a large string of random characters, most users will likely not notice the difference between what they expected to copy and the pasted result," Bleeping Computer continued.
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Bitcoin Scams

National Cricket Team Of South Africa Falsely Involved In Bitcoin Lottery Scam

The Twitter account of the National Cricket Team of South Africa was compromised overnight with more than 1 million followers where hackers reportedly offered a fake bitcoin lottery and in today’s bitcoin news we take a closer look at what happened exactly. The CSA account was hacked and the hacker/s tweeted multiple times trying to sell a bitcoin lottery scam to the followers. However, the national team quickly noticed and notified the supporters that they are not involved in the scheme in any way. The tweet claimed that CSA made a partnership with the Luno crypto wallet where users will win 20 BTC if they signed up for it. Of course, the tweet got deleted quickly but in it was a BTC address where the participants ‘’should’ve’’ sent their bitcoins in order to participate. CSA wrote to its followers:
‘’And... we're back! Apologies to all our Twitter followers who were affected by the hack overnight. We are back in control & ready to bring you what promises to be an even more eventful Day 4 of Test cricket. Thank you to our friends at the @ICC for your assistance this morning.’’
Luno also debunked the news making clear that the wallet provider has never partnered with the national team:
 “We distance ourselves from this tweet that is going around.’’
In 2018, many Twitter accounts got hacked where many of them impersonated Elon Musk even one managed to steal as much as $170,000. Scams happened in the name of Charlie Lee as well where scammers tried to fake Litecoin giveaways. The hackers promised the users to send them LTC once they make a deposit to their mobile wallet.
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