Just because something is Cryptographically secure, does not mean that it cannot be stolen. One way that this is unfortunately proving to be more and more true is with SIM swapping. What this phenomenon results in is stolen identities and stolen Crypto stashes as well, if these stashes are kept on mobile phones. Despite this, you may not be clear at this point on what SIM swapping entails. As I suggested above, it is a form of hacking and stealing someone’s identity. Precisely, this means that the hacker gets access to another person’s mobile phone from far away.
If you are wondering how, what it truly seems to involve is knowing enough or gaining enough personal information on someone in order to call their cell phone company and act as if you are them. Through the example of Michael Terpin, who appears to have lost $24 million in Crypto due to SIM swapping, we can see the quite scary reality of just how easy it seems to be to do. First of all, this case appears to relate directly to how we described this sort of attack above. Someone convinced his cellphone provider that they were him and needed to transfer all of the info on his phone to their phone. On a deeper level, research by Cointelegraph indicates that this is often helped along by insiders who educate the hackers on how to get through security barriers at the cellphone companies they work with, in exchange for payment. Now, according to Cointelegraph’s latest article on the subject, the Cybercrime division of the California police have decided that due to how easy such a crime is to pull off, it needs to be at the top of their list.
Reportedly, they have even allocated a special team called the Regional Enforcement Allied Computer Team, to focus almost solely on this type of crime until they determine it is brought under control. In the end, it is reasonable to ask: what conclusion can the average Crypto investor draw from this? For now, we can end by saying that mobile Crypto wallets are not safe enough to hold any sort of serious amount of Crypto in, at least not yet. Once some sort of measure is taken to block this sort of criminal in their efforts, then maybe we will be able to make a different conclusion altogether.
By: BGN Editorial Staff