Tuesday, November 30

Man loses R$440,000 in Bitcoin after cell phone was stolen from car window

A man who had his cell phone stolen through his car window lost around R$440,000 in Bitcoin, in a moment of carelessness.

One of the reasons people come to Peru is tourism, such as Machu Picchu, Cusco and even the sacred valley of the Incas. And a Bitcoin investor ended up in the country for a vacation tour that lasted more than 2 weeks.

But in the last two days of his tour, he ran into a problem that cost him his life savings in Peru’s capital, Lima.

“I was recently in Peru for a few weeks, traveling on vacation. It was an incredible 2.5 weeks until the last 2 days. On Thursday, November 11th, I decided to spend the last days of my trip exploring the Miraflores district of Lima, Peru.”

Trader had just taken a taxi from the airport

In an account of his final experience in Lima, the cryptocurrency investor had arrived in the capital and taken a taxi. As he was hungry, he decided to take his iPhone to look for a restaurant.

Without noticing the advance of a bandit when he was stopped in traffic, the man ended up having his cell phone taken out the window. The criminal quickly fled and got lost in the crowd, unable to track his whereabouts.

He even thought he was going to have trouble with the police bureaucracy, trying to file a police report and the like. But what he could barely imagine was that his nightmare would be much worse.

“When I landed at the airport, I took a taxi from the airport kiosk and started heading to Miraflores. Less than 2 miles from the airport, in heavy traffic, I was on my iPhone (looking for restaurants in the area – Lima is a gastronomic paradise) with the window open when I was suddenly robbed. Someone approached me in the middle of traffic and stole my iPhone from my hands through the window.”

Man remembered that at the time of the theft the device was unlocked and soon remembered Bitcoins

A little shaken by the theft, the cryptocurrency trader ended up remembering that at the time of the robbery his device was unlocked. Thus, he remembered that the thief could easily have access to his files, something that made him ask the taxi driver to return urgently to the airport.

He had his iPad too, but his device only works over the internet when in a Wi-Fi environment. Upon arriving at the site after about 40 minutes, he started to access his accounts, noticing a suspicious email sent by Coinbase.

Upon seeing the message, it was clear that the criminal or his group were already accessing their cryptocurrency wallets at brokerages. As the device gave access to email and 2FA applications, it was easy to move everything he had.

As criminals stole your cryptocurrencies, they erased incoming emails to try to disguise the criminal operation. Even so, the trader realized the whole problem, even though it was already late at that point.

“The panic set in, but it was too late. Coinbase, Binance and Trust wallet (mostly Trust wallet so I don’t save much on trades), all drained and shipped to his address. $85,000 in entries disappeared within 30 minutes. He obviously knew what he was doing.”

According to the trader, this value was the biggest part of his life savings, with the situation leaving him devastated.

Two Costly Mistakes: Storing cryptocurrencies on cell phones and brokers

What the trader believes there may be a group of thieves waiting for tourists around the airport, trying to pick up their unlocked cell phones in moments of inattention.

Furthermore, he realized that criminals didn’t tamper with his stock apps, only those with cryptocurrencies. His MetaMask account was also on the stolen device, but the criminals didn’t tamper with that account, with some of the damage being minimized.

Anyway, the investor narrated in the Reddit of Cryptocurrencies, which lost US$ 85,000, around R$ 440,000 today, as a learning curve not to leave their brokerage accounts logged on cell phones.

Remember that cryptocurrency wallets are secure if they are in secure environments. Cell phones are not the most correct places to store cryptocurrencies, as are brokerages, which are considered “hot places of custody”. For added security, it is important to store valuables in secure locations such as cold wallets.


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