Chinese police have arrested three individuals suspected to have stolen assets worth 600 million yuan ($87 million) through hacking.
According to a report in Xinhua, China’s state-owned press agency, the police began investigating in Match of this year, after a resident of Xian complained that hackers had taken control of his computer and stolen 100 million yuan (US$15 million) worth of cryptocurrency.
As a preliminary investigation showed, hackers had used remote hijacking techniques to gain access and control of cryptocurrency accounts belonging to the victim identified as Zhang. The police received assistance from several unnamed internet companies, and three months later, a suspect named Zhou was found. Zhou’s communications led to two more alleged accomplices, and all the three suspects who altogether have stolen 600 million yuan (approx.$87 million) are currently in custody.
“Our bureau has not dealt with this kind of case before,” an officer said. “It’s the first virtual currency-related case in Shaanxi.”
According to the police, the hackers split the income from selling the stolen virtual currency into smaller units and then carried out multiple transactions to cover their traces.
Earlier, in February, the Chinese financial authorities banned cryptocurrency trading by blocking access to overseas-based websites and removing related applications from app stores. However, Chinese courts are still overwhelmed by a large number of cases connected with hacking. In July, police in China’s Dalian city arrested 20 suspects from an IT firm who allegedly used crypto mining malware to infect over a million computers and earned more than $2 million over two years. Police in the city of Tianjin and the Anhui province have also arrested cryptocurrency miners for stealing electricity to power their mining rigs, equipment which has also been seized by the authorities.
A significant increase in crimes related to digital assets is connected with the growth in popularity of cryptocurrencies, and cases of hacking attacks are numerous not only in China.
In July, British police seized £1.25 million in bitcoin from a criminal. As was reported by Coinspeaker, the British police found a crypto wallet with 295 Bitcoins while conducting the raid at the house of a criminal, who was charged for cannabis cultivation and money laundering.
Another case took place in Thailand. A crypto millionaire from Finland has lost more than 5,500 bitcoins due to a scam, and the police found out that a famous Thai film actor Jiratpisit Jaravijit was responsible for the attack.