A 20-year-old college student Joel Ortiz to face 10 years in prison for stealing $5 Million in cryptocurrency through SIM hijacking attacks and he is the first person to get convicted.
According to Motherboard he Hijacked more than 40 victims and swapped their phone numbers to the SIM card owned by hackers.
SIM-swapping or SIM Hijacking is the technique used by criminals to register an already existing number on a new SIM card, by having control over the phone number attackers can bypass 2FA authentication and reset the passwords to gain access to the victim’s accounts.
Ortiz accepted the plea last week and the authorities believe he is the first person convicted for SIM swapping fraud.
Authorities arrested Ortiz last year for hijacking phone numbers and using them to then hack into emails, social media accounts, and online Bitcoin wallets.
“We think justice has been served. And hopefully, this is a strong message to that community,” Samy Tarazi on of the investigator in the Ortiz case to Motherboard.
Nicholas Truglia also arrested last year for stealing $1 million through SIM-swapping scheme and he is pending for extradition to Santa Clara.
Last January a Mumbai businessman lost Rs. 1.86cr from his bank account, attackers obtained the unique SIM number and have initiated the SIM swap.
The SIM swapping attacks are in raise and anybody can fall prey to it.