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Author Topic: First UK's bitcoin robbery. Stay safe.  (Read 501 times)
pawel7777
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January 29, 2018, 02:49:45 PM
Last edit: February 23, 2018, 10:31:15 PM by pawel7777
Merited by Reid (2), Chris314 (1)
 #1

Sad story from UK, it's all over the news today:

Britain's first Bitcoin heist as trader forced at gunpoint to transfer cyber currency
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/01/28/britains-first-bitcoin-heist-trader-forced-gunpoint-transfer/

Quote
Armed robbers broke into the family home of a city financier turned Bitcoin trader and forced him to transfer the digital currency at gunpoint, in what is believed to be the first heist of its kind in the UK.

Four robbers in balaclavas forced their way into the home of Danny Aston, 30, who runs a digital currency trading firm, before reportedly tying up a woman and forcing Mr Aston to transfer an unknown quantity of the cryptocurrency.
...

Other links:
http://metro.co.uk/2018/01/29/uks-first-bitcoin-robbery-prolific-trader-forced-transfer-fortune-7268576/
https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/5444048/bitcoin-robbery-gunpoint-danny-aston-oxfordshire-amy-jay-baby/



I hope targeting bitcoiners won't become a new trend for criminals.

And seriously, what's the best practice to prevent such cases, when you hold/have access to significant amount of bitcoins? Sure you could hide your private key (or part of it) in some secure place outside of your home, but then the risk of you (or your family) getting tortured or even killed increases. Well organised group as described above unlikely would be happy to leave with nothing.

And what about exchanges? 2FA is a prevention from hacking, but won't work at all if you're held at gunpoint. I'd be very happy to see some extra (opt-in) security features on exchanges, i.e. few days delay in withdrawing BTC above certain amount.

Thoughts?

Disclaimer: I'm just a humble crypto-enthusiast and only hold modest amounts. Plz no raid.

Edit: alternative thread (no signatures allowed): https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=2838558.msg29168004#msg29168004 (thanks vintages)

Edit2: Please don't quote this entire post when replying unless it's necessary (almost never is). It makes thread harder to read and it's a bad practice.

Edit3: another, more horrific story from Moscow: https://cointelegraph.com/news/moscow-man-mutilated-and-mugged-for-1-million-in-bitcoin-local-sources-report

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January 29, 2018, 03:22:11 PM
 #2

Everything can surely be done at gunpoint, i dont think we can prevent anything about that besides we do transactions without middleman just between wallet. If we do a transactions from a bank, then if any of that transaction arose suspicious, the bank can definitely cancel or pending that transaction for further notice. But with bitcoin everything is different, it didnt have any regulations and no one responsible for your wallet beside your own.

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January 29, 2018, 03:24:20 PM
 #3

I don't think adding new features in exchanges is what would help here, as this is quite the short term situation that many users hold their funds in exchanges.
In future, hopefully, you will not be exchanging BTC, you will be buying stuff with it. And hopefully users would be using their own software wallets.
Using exchanges increases your risk of being hacked in the first place, as centralized exchanges get hacked all the time, more often than people getting robbed. Same applies to other web wallets.

You can always add this into blockchain itself. You can simply lock most of your BTC with locktime transactions that would have the same effect as the delay that you are suggesting and you would be exposed to extra risk of holding your funds in a web wallet.
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January 29, 2018, 03:27:59 PM
 #4

3 months ago, an exchange owner has been kidnapped by robbers in Turkey. They forced the exchange owner to give private key of the cold wallet. Then the police had caught the robbers and rescued the exchange owner.
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January 29, 2018, 03:33:38 PM
 #5

Very little you can do in this scenario, one practical advice from the world of bullion/jewellery is to keep valuables offsite.  In the case of crypto that means holding only an operational amount in wallet close at hand, the rest in cold wallets on a physically different secure location. 
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January 29, 2018, 03:36:11 PM
 #6

This is really a scary news for all of us.  But "No arrest has been made'' scares me even more there must be cc tv camera every where. These criminals need to be arrested asap.
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January 29, 2018, 03:42:58 PM
 #7

This is really a scary news for all of us.  But "No arrest has been made'' scares me even more there must be cc tv camera every where.

Outside town centers there are very few CCTV cameras, usually only garages or few private homes.
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January 29, 2018, 04:06:33 PM
 #8

There will be many more similar incidents like this around the world.  Safest thing you can do is to remain anonymous when you're involved with cryptocurrencies.  Don't go out getting a "BITCOIN" license plate on your Lamborghini.
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January 29, 2018, 04:14:11 PM
 #9

i.e. few days delay in withdrawing BTC above certain amount.

Wow. That's really scary! I also hope that it will not be a new trend for criminals.
I think that it is practically possible to introduce a delay, but it is probably very impractical for a transaction that you desperately wants to do (An advantage of BTC is the speed of transactions.). In addition, criminals could then force their victim to turn off the security measure (if it should be a security measure that needs to be activated).
So we would be back at the beginning. Of course, I agree with you that more safety measures should be introduced.

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January 29, 2018, 04:15:30 PM
 #10

I think you should always have a hardwallet such as Trezor or Ledger, and you should keep it inside a safe, if you have a lot of Bitcoins probably even in a security vault at the bank. And the backup phrases also somewhere safe.
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January 29, 2018, 04:25:59 PM
 #11

Ya, I saw the news and also this is been discussed in a thread here; https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=2838558.msg29168004#msg29168004
Though, this sort of incident have happened in the US some time ago, last year particularly. This way of stealing bitcoin will soon be an arising issue in months to come. On how to protect yourself; As suggested by a user in the thread, you may want to equipt yourself with protective weapons like pepper spray or hand knife but if skeptical  you may simply choose to avoid been know as a bitcoin trader or investor.

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January 29, 2018, 04:28:36 PM
 #12

I think you should always have a hardwallet such as Trezor or Ledger, and you should keep it inside a safe, if you have a lot of Bitcoins probably even in a security vault at the bank. And the backup phrases also somewhere safe.

That doesn't matter when you have a gun pointed at your head.  You will go get that Ledger or Trezor and transfer them your cryptocurrencies.  Best thing is to not advertise yourself as having cryptos.  
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January 29, 2018, 04:39:54 PM
 #13

I think you should always have a hardwallet such as Trezor or Ledger, and you should keep it inside a safe, if you have a lot of Bitcoins probably even in a security vault at the bank. And the backup phrases also somewhere safe.

Hardware wallets/on-site safe wouldn't work. You'll just be forced to open the safe and transfer funds.



Other idea, is having smaller wallet/alternative exchange account that you keep only small portion of your holdings, but not too small. Then you could say that's all you got and hopefully robbers would take it and f**k off.

There will be many more similar incidents like this around the world.  Safest thing you can do is to remain anonymous when you're involved with cryptocurrencies.  Don't go out getting a "BITCOIN" license plate on your Lamborghini.

This is obviously good advise. Stay anonymous and don't brag about your mad crypto gains.
But not everyone can stay in the shadows, the victim in this case was/is running cryptocurrency trading firm, assuming the operations involve trading on behalf of clients and that his firm was registered, staying anonymous was not an option for the guy.


Ya, I saw the news and also this is been discussed in a thread here; https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=2838558.msg29168004#msg29168004
...

Thanks. Updated OP with the link.



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January 29, 2018, 04:40:39 PM
 #14

I think you should always have a hardwallet such as Trezor or Ledger, and you should keep it inside a safe, if you have a lot of Bitcoins probably even in a security vault at the bank. And the backup phrases also somewhere safe.

That doesn't matter when you have a gun pointed at your head.  You will go get that Ledger or Trezor and transfer them your cryptocurrencies.  Best thing is to not advertise yourself as having cryptos.  

I agree with your views. It is better to stay low profile to reduce the possibility being targeted. Hope everyone stay safe from such incidents.

.


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January 29, 2018, 04:57:02 PM
 #15

This is such a personal act where you can pretty much can't do anything but to do it unless you're good at self-defense but that won't really do it because you'll expect groups not just one. At this situation that happened, I don't think that someone common will do this even if they just recently learned about Bitcoin. I mean if I was like a stupid person that doesn't know that much about Bitcoin, why would I try to rob this man that uses his Bitcoin for trading? Do I even know how exchanges work? Will that man teach me how to trade and then rob him behind? The person that could have done this is someone that was already using Bitcoin for a long time because they already know how the technology as of now works.

I agree with your views. It is better to stay low profile to reduce the possibility being targeted. Hope everyone stay safe from such incidents.

It is still quite a fear to stay low profile as people from the dark web might surface out and rob and hack a lot of users that uses Bitcoin as it is the primary currency down there. We aren't really that kind of safe.

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January 29, 2018, 05:08:32 PM
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This is another dark side that is being opened in the crypto world and I must say this is the first time reading about this although I have imagined something like this before. Of getting robbed and checking your phone only to realize that there is a crypto currency app on your phone only to be forced at gun point to transfer everything. This is even worse because if it had been bank, you might be able to withdraw your fund if its not withdrawn yet but bitcoin, the moment one confirmation is done that is the end.

In protecting one self, I don't think its going to be any easy as you are trying to stay safe online, some other people are coming against you offline and this is a lesson for everyone. As because of his activities that is why he was targeted so, we need to be discreet in how we loud and make noise of our activities as it relates to bitcoin because when it happens, the whole of life time effort might have been swept while there is no one to report to.

 
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January 29, 2018, 05:11:37 PM
 #17

Unfortunately with the value added to bitcoin and crypto currency and certain anonymity criminals will try to rob people for bitcoin. The robbers would have to have a certain level of knowledge about bitcoin to even target this guy. I don't think there is much you can do to prevent such incidents apart from not letting anyone know about your crypto.

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January 29, 2018, 05:15:04 PM
 #18

That's the whole point of being anonymous, to prevent such calamity from being targeted by this thieves because if they know that you are in a business with crypto they will assume that you have millions of dollars that are worth from each coin you deal with your business or trading, in short, they will assume that you are rich as cryptocurrency increases and expands every day. robbery still exist from other kinds of businesses but it is scary that they begin to have an idea to attack some holders of virtual currency, so bragging about your business with cryptocurrency is not a good idea.

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January 29, 2018, 05:19:16 PM
 #19

I think you should always have a hardwallet such as Trezor or Ledger, and you should keep it inside a safe, if you have a lot of Bitcoins probably even in a security vault at the bank. And the backup phrases also somewhere safe.

Hardware wallets/on-site safe wouldn't work. You'll just be forced to open the safe and transfer funds.



Other idea, is having smaller wallet/alternative exchange account that you keep only small portion of your holdings, but not too small. Then you could say that's all you got and hopefully robbers would take it and f**k off.

There will be many more similar incidents like this around the world.  Safest thing you can do is to remain anonymous when you're involved with cryptocurrencies.  Don't go out getting a "BITCOIN" license plate on your Lamborghini.

This is obviously good advise. Stay anonymous and don't brag about your mad crypto gains.
But not everyone can stay in the shadows, the victim in this case was/is running cryptocurrency trading firm, assuming the operations involve trading on behalf of clients and that his firm was registered, staying anonymous was not an option for the guy.


Ya, I saw the news and also this is been discussed in a thread here; https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=2838558.msg29168004#msg29168004
...

Thanks. Updated OP with the link.



Absolutely,this guy was running a trading firm and therefore,in no way he could have stayed anonymous.But for others using cryptos,they would just have to not express their lavish kind of life style in any of the social media which could turn against them.

Now every one is aware that bitcoin is a very valuable asset and probably most of them holding bitcoins in large numbers are millionaires.So,more the number of bitcoins more the security threat.

Bitcoin being pseudo anonymous and not even legalized in most of the countries,chances are zero for recovering the lost bitcoins.
The_Real_One
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January 29, 2018, 05:32:31 PM
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And seriously, what's the best practice to prevent such cases, when you hold/have access to significant amount of bitcoins?

That's blooming obvious. Do the same as Satoshi, stay anonymous.

Don't make your face, ID, live in public for the criminals to see.
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