Authorities in Oklahoma City arrested a man who sources in the bent hacking association accept to be one of the best abominable “SIM swappers,” who abduct cellphone numbers and use them in cryptocurrency heists. He is accused of burglary $14 actor in cryptocurrency in one distinct heist.
At the end of September, Oklahoma News 4 appear that the Secret Service had bedfast Joseph Harris, 21, and Fletcher Robert Childers, 23. Harris, according to assorted sources in the bent underground apple of SIM hijackers, is accepted as “Doc,” who they affirmation is one of the best abounding SIM swappers on the internet.
In the aftermost year, abyss accept been targeting victims with alleged SIM swapping, SIM hijacking, or anchorage out scams. This is an added accepted and alarming scam. It consists of tricking a cellphone provider into appointment the target’s buzz cardinal to a SIM agenda controlled by the criminal, again fraudsters can advantage it to displace the victims’ passwords and breach into their online accounts and abduct their cryptocurrency.
Harris has been answerable with hacking, character theft, and admirable larceny, according to a account of facts provided by the authorities to Motherboard. Harris is accused of burglary $14 actor in cryptocurrency from Crowd Machine, a blockchain startup. On September 21, Harris allegedly afraid the company’s CEO and blanket his clandestine keys, which accustomed him to admission Crowd Machine wallets and abduct the cryptocurrency.
The CEO appear the annexation the aing day to the Regional Enforcement Allied Computer Team—or REACT—a assignment force of assorted bounded California badge departments that focuses on cybercrime, which has been investigating SIM swapping hacks for months. After a quick investigation, the authorities were able to locate and arrest Harris forth with Childers, who has yet to be charged, according to authorities.
Overall, it took board alone three canicule to clue bottomward Harris.
“That’s the continued arm of the law,” Dave Berry, one of the REACT board on the case, told Motherboard in a buzz call.
Berry and his colleagues did not appetite to affirm absolutely that Harris is absolutely Doc, as “nicknames get a little confusing.” But several bent sources claimed Harris is absolutely Doc.
Earlier this year, Ian Balina, a cryptocurrency broker who was afraid and absent added than $2 million, believes two hackers called Doc and Veri were responsible.
“He’s been appealing active in the hacking apple for a while,” Berry told Motherboard. “And he’s acutely actual tech savvy.”
Harris is aloof the aftermost in a growing account of arrests. At the end of July, REACT arrested 20-year-old Joel Ortiz, accusing him of accepting baseborn millions on cryptocurrency. Again Florida authorities arrested a 25-year-old. Finally, afore Harris, California cops nabbed 19-year-old Xzavyer Narvaez, who acclimated baseborn bitcoin to buy affluence cars.
Added arrests are coming, according to the investigators.
“REACT isn’t activity to stop the SIM swapping analysis until SIM swapping stops,” REACT administrator John Rose told me. “If it’s gonna booty us arresting every SIM swapper in United States.”
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