As various technological mediums become more integrated and interconnected, so do the hacks and scams. They are becoming increasingly elaborate and sophisticated, and a lack of ‘standardization’ in the cybercrime space means it is nearly impossible for people and even cybersecurity firms to shore up their defenses. In the latest hack, a team of Call of Duty players successfully coerced a man into committing a crime by using a technique known as ‘SWATing.’
Call of Duty – SWATing USD 3.3 Million
The irony of a team of Call of Duty players calling in a real-life SWAT team to help them commit a crime is not lost on anyone. SWATing is when a violent crime is reported at a persons’ home address so that the SWAT team has to be called in. A man in Bloomington, Illinois, gave his home address to a number of people in the online war game Call of Duty, where people can talk or message with relative privacy.
In a very bizarre heist, the ring of players allegedly forced the man to take over the cell phones of certain individuals whose names he was provided with. In an FBI Affidavit, the man admitted to taking over 100 cell phones. The group then took over, hacking the cryptocurrency wallets stored on the phones. The cryptocurrency, including over USD 805,000 of Augur Reputation tokens, was then transferred to the hackers wallets. The man has since disputed that he took over 100 phones, and has also proclaimed his innocence stating that he never once made any profit. In an interview with the Chicago Sun-Times –
“I have done nothing but cooperate with Augur and the FBI…I have never once profited from anyone [by] crypto-hacking, ever.”
Another suspect from Dolton, Indiana is said to be involved in the case. This is where the crime syndicate is said to have originated from. On Aug 1st, FBI agents raided the Dolton man’s home and seized computers and cell phones according to court records. No suspects have yet been charged with any crimes.
Proliferation of cybercrime
According to reports from Carbon Black, 92% of business have been breached by cyber attacks in the past year, and 91% of businesses believe that these attacks are getting increasingly sophisticated. In China, a number of high-level attacks have taken place, including a collaboration with established hardware companies who install computers to internet cafes, preloaded with crypto jacking malware. Additionally, new variations of classical Ponzi schemes are still proving effective, such as the BitConnect heist. And the ‘barriers to entry’ for committing a cybercrime are getting lower, especially in terms of ransomware.
According to all reports, cybercrime is on the increase, not just in intensity or number, but in its innovation. There is an increasing number of attack vectors, as evidenced by the above story involving an online video game, SWATing, and hacking cryptocurrency wallets on users cell phones.
Digital Nomad with an interest in Zen and Blockchain technology.
Law graduate with 3 years experience as a consultant in the capital markets industry and 4 years experience freelancing on UpWork as a Creative Writer.