Hackers Steal Millions in Crypto by Spoofing Blockchain.com
A small group of hackers managed to steal millions of dollars worth in cryptocurrency from thousands of victims by mimicking Blockchain.com website.
European authorities managed to identify and arrest six people for fraud after they had created a website that mimicked Blockchain.com to lure their victims to provide them with the information they needed to steal their cryptocurrency from their wallets, according to a report by Avon and Somerset Police.
The hackers used a simple technique known as “typosquatting,” which involves purchasing a domain name that is similar to the one belonging to the entity they’re trying to imitate, essentially providing a near-perfect mirror illusion to visitors.
As far as the South West Regional Cyber Crime Unit from the UK can confirm, over 22 million GBP has been stolen as a result of this.
“The investigation has grown from a single report of 17,000 GBP worth of Bitcoin stolen from a Wiltshire-based victim to a current estimate of more than four thousand victims in at least 12 countries. We expect that number to grow,” detective inspector Louise Boyce said.
Spoofing presents a more convenient way to acquire cryptocurrency through nefarious means than other conventional methods such as using botnets to mine the coins. However, the rewards do not scale the same way, nor are they as consistent.
Regardless, during slumps in mining profitability, hackers prefer to resort to alternative methods. For example, 2018’s uptick in fake ICO sites coincided with a downward trend in mining.
Likewise, we can expect spoofs like these to take a backseat to the previous status quo in the near future if trends continue the way they do. Data from BitInfoCharts shows that mining profitability is on the rise again.
The strength of this rise will determine what choices hackers decide to make in the future to get their hands on cryptocurrency. At the same time, value of coins over time will also have an influence on how frequent these thefts will be.