In a first for the Metropolitan Police, a significant haul of Bitcoin has been seized from a prolific hacker who has now been sentenced to jail time, for his malicious cyber activities.
According to City AM, the accused, Grant West, is responsible for attacks on more than 100 companies across the globe, during which he managed to obtain the financial data of thousands of customers through the establishment of phishing scams. It is alleged that this data was then sold online for Bitcoin.
Some of the firms on West’s hitlist include Nectar, Sainsburys, Ladbrokes, Coral, Argos, T Mobile, Uber and Asda, to name but a few.
One of his more prolific scams is alleged to have involved online food ordering service, Just Eat, in a scam that allowed him to extract the data of around 165,000 of Just Eat customers.
According to City AM:
“The 26-year-old, of Ashcroft Caravan Park, Sheerness, Kent, pleaded guilty to 10 different offences. His girlfriend Rachael Brookes, 26, of Denbigh, North Wales pleaded guilty to unauthorised use of computer material.”
According to City AM, Detective Chief Superintendent of the Metropolitan Police’s Organised Crime Unit has said:
“This case illustrates the lengths that our detectives will go to in order to pursue offenders on the dark web. We will use many different measures to ensure such offenders are identified, prosecuted and their assets are seized. This is the first time we have seized a cryptocurrency and we are determined to remain one step ahead of cyber criminals who believe they can act with impunity.”
See the full report from City AM, here-
Overall, this is very startling news, namely in terms of our data security and it certainly highlights just how vulnerable we all are. Moreover, over half a million USD with of Bitcoin are now to be dealt with by the authorities, what happens in these circumstances is still unclear, that however is to be expected considering the Police in the UK don’t come face to face with this sort of deviance too often.