12 April, 2024



$13.3M Lost in 54 SIM Swap Attacks Over 4 Months: Sleuth Exposes

24 Aug, 2023

21 Nov, 2023

  • Crypto investigator ZachXBT uncovers a $13.3M loss in 54 SIM swap attacks over 4 months, leaving victims reeling.
  • ZachXBT reveals cyber criminals’ tactics and advises ditching SMS 2FA for secure options.
  • Prominent crypto lawyer Deaton warns of sophisticated attackers pushing for improved security against SIM swaps.

In a startling revelation, renowned on-chain detective ZachXBT has exposed a rampant wave of cyber theft, uncovering a staggering $13.3 million loss in just four months. The victims, all crypto holders, fell prey to an alarming 54 SIM swap attacks that left their digital assets vanquished. These findings have prompted widespread concern as industry insiders weigh in on the issue’s magnitude.

ZachXBT further unveiled the insidious tactics employed by these cyber criminals. When seizing control of an account, scammers artfully fabricate a sense of urgency, duping users with false claims designed to drain their assets. The seasoned blockchain enthusiast advocates forsaking SMS-based two-factor authentication (2FA) in favor of more robust safeguards like authenticator applications or security keys.

In the realm of crypto, known for unveiling fraudulent schemes, ZachXBT fearlessly delved into the intricate threads woven by the 54 SIM swap incidents. Most targets originate from the U.S., with significant mobile carriers like T-Mobile, Verizon, and AT&T falling victim to the tactics of these deceitful entities.

Among those to respond is John Deaton, a prominent crypto lawyer and the mastermind behind Crypto Law. Reacting to ZachXBT’s expose, Deaton voiced his apprehensions, noting that the hackers behind these sophisticated attacks could easily deceive victims. The implications of these highly targeted heists are grave, as Deaton acknowledges the dire need for heightened security measures.

The gravity of the situation struck closer to home for Deaton, who fell victim to a SIM swap attack in March. Speaking about his harrowing experience, Deaton recounted how his Uphold account, a prominent digital wallet and trading platform, was abruptly frozen. The attacker’s modus operandi involved a sinister phone call following a seemingly innocuous email, posing as “Uphold Verification”. Deaton’s recollection underscores the sophistication of these swindlers and the ease with which unsuspecting individuals could be tangled.

The FBI, shedding light on the mechanics of these attacks, described the criminals’ tactics as “social engineering”. By manipulating mobile carrier customer service representatives, the attackers successfully rerouted victims’ phone numbers to SIM cards under their control. Armed with this access, they exploit text messages and authentication codes to infiltrate bank accounts and crypto wallets, leaving a trail of financial devastation.

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