Two Massachusetts men have been accused of having been for a number of years they stole cryptocurrency by unsuspecting victims, gaining access to Appliances and e-mail their. And their family members were also threatened.
The two defendants, named Eric Meiggs, 21, and Declan Harrington, 20, targeted anonymous cryptocurrency companies as well as people with "lucrative" accounts on SOCIAL MEDIA.
Meiggs and Harrington allegedly took control of their victims' phone numbers through the technique SIM swapping - that is, persuading a mobile service provider to reassign the number to a new SIM card they were controlling - and then resetting the password from email providers or cryptocurrency services.
The two hackers, however, were not simply stealing. At the same time they harassed family members of victims in various ways in an attempt to persuade victims to pay them.
For example, after checking the phone number of a California resident, someone involved in their plan sent a message to his daughter from the affected phone: “Tell your dad to give us BITCOIN"
But they were not alone in this. In November of 2015, Meiggs called a Michigan resident and threatened to kill his wife if he "did not manage his account at Instagram». Meiggs also told the victim that he knew where he was staying, and sent his mother's address to threaten him further.
Meiggs and Harrington are charged with one count of fraud and unauthorized use of computers, identity theft, conspiracy and eight telephone frauds.
The first hacker conviction for SIM swapping fraud took place earlier this year. In this case, 20-year-old Joel Ortiz from Boston, stole more than $ 5 million in cryptocurrency and was sentenced to 10 years in prison.