2 min Security

“Crypto criminals and fraudsters stole $1.2 billion in first quarter.

“Crypto criminals and fraudsters stole $1.2 billion in first quarter.

Crypto criminals and fraudsters stole over $1.2 billion in the first quarter of 2019. That suggests cryptocurrency security company CipherTrace in a new report, reports Venturebeat.

CipherTrace develops solutions to combat digital money laundering, forensic investigations into cryptic currencies, blockchain threat intelligence and regulatory oversight. The solutions are developed for stock exchanges, banks, researchers, regulators and companies with digital assets.

CipherTrace decided after the scandal of the missing $850 million in the case of Bitfinex and his currency Tether to investigate the risks related to “stable currencies”. These are coins designed to be supported by a stable currency, which in theory should limit price changes.

Types of theft

According to the report, during the first quarter, criminals actually stole more than $356 million in cryptic currency from exchanges and infrastructures. This loss included exit scams, in which founders of crypto companies run off with money. Users of cryptographic currency thus lost nearly 195 million dollars.

In addition, cybercriminals developed ingenious new techniques to steal millions more dollars from user accounts and wallets. These include re-assigning the SIM card of a user’s smartphone, and using two-step verification to create a new password.

Moreover, these are only thefts that are visible. CipherTrace estimates that the actual number of losses of cryptic currency was much higher.

Foreign payments

In addition, foreign payments from crypto-currency exchanges in America to foreign exchanges have increased from 45 percent in 2017 to 66 percent now, according to the report. CipherTrace concluded this after analyzing 164 bitcoin transactions.

This is important because, according to the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, “8.7 trillion dollars, 11.5 percent of global wealth, is hidden offshore”. As soon as payments arrive at exchanges and wallets in other parts of the world, they fall off the radar of the American authorities.

This news article was automatically translated from Dutch to give Techzine.eu a head start. All news articles after September 1, 2019 are written in native English and NOT translated. All our background stories are written in native English as well. For more information read our launch article.