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Crypto Crooks Are Physically Harassing For Virtual Tokens

Feb 26, 2018 Posted /  8163 Views

Crypto Crooks Are Physically Harassing For Virtual Tokens

Last month, in the beach resort of Phuket, an assailer trapped a young Russian man in his apartment and kept him blindfolded there until he transferred Bitcoins worth of $100,000 in assailer’s account.

Another such incident was experienced by the head of Bitcoin exchange of Ukraine. The kidnappers demanded $1 million in Bitcoin in return of their hostage.

In New York, a man was abducted by his friend and released when the victim transferred $1.18 million Ether tokens.

Criminals have always targeted the rich people. With the emergence of cryptocurrency and its day by day increasing demand, the crooks have acquired a new prey.

Bitcoin is a decentralized exchange platform where any regulatory body does not control transactions. Unlike our traditional banking system, once the transaction induced it cannot be reversed. And due to anonymous address, one cannot trace the criminal as well. Many such cases have been recorded in places like Russia, Ukraine, Canada, the United States and Britain.

The founder of Chainalysis, Jonathan Levin has worked with various law enforcement agencies on digital tokens crimes. In an interview with CNBC, he stated:

"This is now becoming more pervasive and touching more law enforcement divisions that deal with organized crime and violent crime on a local level,"

Chainalysis specializes in tracking criminal transactions where every trading is recorded in the distributive ledger. As per Mr. Levin, his company has helped police officials in solving many cases by tracking down the criminal.

But in some cases, police could not reach till the crook even after chasing down the transaction due to the anonymous trading feature of Bitcoin. The police cannot detect the identity of the criminal with his Bitcoin address.

The investigator officer of Phuket case, Chanut Hongsitthichaikul stated that it is hard to detect the criminal. He said:

"For this, the advantage of Bitcoin is that it's hard to verify, We asked the victim how to track it since they know Bitcoin better than us. We asked them how to check the receiver. They said there is no way. It is hard to do."

Thai police found the victim’s laptop in Kuala Lumpur. The laptop was also stolen at the time of the virtual heist. That’s where the chase could not be proceeded further.

Recent virtual heists have encountered a violent phase. Criminals have been aiming for Bitcoin holders from years where they used to conduct a long-run campaign to hijack cell phone numbers of respective users to attain access to their virtual wallets.

A few years ago, a SWAT team was created. The victim had to pay Bitcoin to stop harassment- to which some online tactics called SWATin,

A Bitcoin engineer and Bitcoin currency holder, Jameson Lopp believes that one should be proactive to deal with such threats and also let the criminal know about such measures. Last summer, someone called for a SWAT team to harass Mr.Lopp. After that incident, he has installed close circuit cameras around his property and also tweeted about the automatic weapon.

Mr. Lopp believes that it is essential to publicize restrictive measures to make attacker reconsider the success rate of the assault.

“We're in the very early days of this becoming a problem, The attackers are still trying to figure out what the risk-reward really is." - Jameson Lopp

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Tags: virtual tokens Crypto Crooks

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