The Cybercrime Department of the Turkish National Police has arrested 11 suspects in an alleged hack of crypto accounts, with victims reporting more than $80,000 in losses, major Turkish newspaper Hürriyet reported Friday, Nov. 2.

According to the article, 14 individuals have reported to local prosecution authorities that their crypto wallets were hacked with their Bitcoin (BTC) transferred to other wallets. Following the complaints, the Istanbul police launched an investigation against a group of hackers that had allegedly compromised users’ emails, crypto wallets’ accounts data, and passwords.

On Oct. 26, cybercrime unit agents detained 11 people in multiple locations in Istanbul as a result of joint raids with special operations department Harekat police. Ten suspects were taken into custody, with one of them reportedly released on the condition of then remaining under further “judicial control.” Police have also seized from the alleged hackers two fake identity cards, as well as a number of devices allegedly used in the hacks such as 18 mobile phones and SIM cards, 22 memory sticks, and other items.

According to Turkish prosecutors, the amount of stolen Bitcoin is worth around 437,000 Turkish lira, or more than $80,000. The group of attackers allegedly moved the stolen crypto to multiple accounts in an attempt to cover their tracks before subsequently selling it for fiat.

During the investigation, the cybercrime unit identified some suspects by tracking new SIM card numbers registered to crypto exchange accounts by the hackers. Police agents also tracked the suspects who tried to withdraw the stolen assets from ATMs and banks based on records by multiple security cameras. The article says that the investigation is ongoing, with policemen looking for more victims of the hackers.

In August this year, Cointelegraph reported on the Turkish lira’s collapse, triggering more interest by the Turkish people in buying decentralized cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin (BTC). The lira dropped by 50 percent against the U.S. dollar by August 2018, seeing the all-time lows due to geopolitical factors.

On Aug. 22, police in California detained an alleged hacker who stole Bitcoin worth more than $1 million by hijacking cellphones. The attacker, Xzavyer Narvaez, reportedly used the “SIM swapping” method, also known as a “port out scam,” to steal crypto from victims’ devices.

In October, Vice Media-backed U.S. tech news agency Motherboard reported that Oklahoma City authorities arrested a man allegedly considered to be one of the “most infamous” SIM swappers, who had reportedly stolen cellphone numbers and used them in cryptocurrency thefts. The hacker Joseph Harris, 21, is accused of stealing $14 million in crypto from blockchain startup Crowd Machine.

This post is credit to cointelegraph

Lazarus is reportedly behind most of the cryptocurrency exchange hacks since January 2017. The notorious North Korean hacking syndicated has stolen $571 million in 14 different cyber attacks against exchanges during the period.


Spear Phishing: A Firm Favorite of Cryptocurrency Hackers

On Saturday, Live Bitcoin News published a report based on Moscow-based cyber security firm ‘Group-IB’ findings which showed $882 million worth of cryptocurrency lost via exchange hacks and ICO scams. Of this figure, the North Korean hacking group reportedly orchestrated the theft of more than 64 percent in 14 different hacks.

According to the report, spear phishing remains a popular attack vector for the group as well as other hackers. A portion of the report reads:

Spear phishing remains the major vector of attack on corporate networks. For instance, fraudsters deliver malware under the cover of CV spam [with an attachment] that has a malware embedded in the document.

Apart from spear phishing exploits, hackers also use a variety of social engineering and malware vectors to steal cryptocurrency. For their part, Lazarus is linked to many cyber attacks against individuals, business, and government agencies around the globe.

Lazarus Leading North Korea’s Global Cyber Warfare

Recently, Live Bitcoin News also reported on how the group was using MacOS Malware to attack cryptocurrency exchange platforms. According to Kaspersky Lab, the malware could infect both Windows and MacOS computers.

Earlier in the year, McAfee Advanced Threat Research published a report which showed coordinated attacks under a hacking campaign called “Operation GhostSecret” carried out by Hidden Cobra, the other name for Lazarus. The campaign targets critical sectors in other countries, stealing sensitive data.

Researchers at McAfee say GhostSecret’s mode of operations mirror that used in the WannaCry attack of 2017 and the Sony Pictures hack of 2014. Reports indicate that the Lazarus group began its hacking operations since 2009, with the United States and South Korea its first victims.

Part of the Plan to Evade Sanctions

Some experts believe that countries like Iran, Venezuela, and North Korea are turning to cryptocurrencies as a means of circumventing US-led economic sanctions. While the former two use means like creating a national cryptocurrency or using established virtual currencies, North Korea appears to be taking several notches with coordinated state-sponsored cyber attacks against businesses within and outside the virtual currency industry.

In the aftermath of the Coincheck hack that happened in January 2018, South Korean Intelligence Service accused North Korean hackers of being responsible for the cyber attack. More than $530 million in NEM tokens was stolen during the Coincheck hack.

What do you think about the rising incidents of attacks against cryptocurrency exchanges by the North Korea-based Lazarus hacking syndicate? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.

This post is credited to livebitcoinnews

A 21-year-old Russian from the Siberian city of Kurgan is facing criminal charges for illegally mining Bitcoins (BTC) via government-owned servers, local news agency Ura.Ru reports Tuesday, October 16, citing the regional office of Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB).

The investigation found that the man hacked public administration servers in three Russian regions. The breach was discovered when the Internal Security Division in the city of Yaroslavl noticed the intruder’s attempt to hack their equipment.

The alleged hacker was then charged with deliberate use of software that “neutralizes” a computer’s network defense “out of self-interest.” Under this article he could face up to five years in prison, if found guilty.

As Cointelegraph previously wrote in a review of illicit mining cases, stealing or illicitly receiving electricity then used to mine is often the crime punished by prison terms, rather than the mining itself. For instance, in South Korea this April, police arrested miners who purposely rented out factories and chicken farms to receive electricity for substantially lower rates.

Further, in another case in the U.S. state of New York this March, local authorities asked miners to cease their work after residents of one town filed an official complaint to the police for the excessive usage of low-cost electricity by local miners.

More recently, this month a Chinese man was reportedly sentenced 3.5 years in jail for stealing electricity from a train station to fuel his Bitcoin mining facility. In addition to the prison sentence, he was also fined 100,000 yuan (around $14,500).

This post is credit to cointelegraph