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Author Topic: Bitcoin Physical Attacks getting more serious  (Read 213 times)
dkbit98
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February 18, 2021, 10:18:24 AM
 #1

List of known attacks against people who own Bitcoin and crypto assets are getting bigger every day, as we can see in Jameson Lopp github page.
Who knows how many similar unknown attacks are happening all the time but they never got published for various reasons, maybe victims are scared, they don't want publicity and they just never report the crime.
It would be a good idea to go through this previous cases and learn from their examples how to avoid getting attacked for owning Bitcoin.

Only this years there was four known attack on people, two of them happened in Hong Kong, and other two happened in Europe, one in Poland and other one in Sweden.
Depending on your location in the world someone could attack you for $100 or $1M worth Bitcoin, just like people got attacked for fiat currencies all the time and with rise of Bitcoin popularity this attacks will probably increase.

Famous people who own Bitcoin are at much higher risk to become victims of this attacks so they care much more about their security and they use multisig, multiple wallets, different locations for backups so that even them alone can't recover all their bitcoins even with gun pointed in their head.

What can regular people do to reduce this risk?

- Never talk in public how much Bitcoins you own, or maybe don't even say that you even own any Bitcoin.
- Try not to reveal your private information with various KYC procedures, or for ordering any crypto related stuff like hardware wallets.
- Don't keep all your Bitcoins in one wallet address and use multiple decoy wallets with small amount of coins.
- Use better security for your seed backups.

Do you think it is important to keep somehow private the fact that you own Bitcoin and crypto or you should talk everyone about it?

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February 18, 2021, 10:29:22 AM
 #2

I think we just need to practice it the normal way. Now the Gold exists since many years and almost everyone owns gold. We see many many cases of gold snatchers everyday but it does not mean we will stop using the gold.

Bitcoin is an asset now, with tremendous value. So it's but obvious technical thieves will now shift to the trends where they are stealing your private keys and putting us in situation to share the bitcoin wallet information.

However,

I believe that bitcoin holding is way lot more secure and anonymous as compared to asset like gold or diamond jewellery.
The risk is reduced due to this fact. So yes, as long as we don't publicly speak about it or about our holding then no one will ever know about it.

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February 18, 2021, 10:30:08 AM
 #3

- Never talk in public how much Bitcoins you own, or maybe don't even say that you even own any Bitcoin.
To be fair, those people that talk about their bitcoin and how much they own especially in a condescending manner deserves to have their bitcoin stolen, braggarts have the loosest lips so I don't mind them losing what they have.
- Try not to reveal your private information with various KYC procedures, or for ordering any crypto related stuff like hardware wallets.
This is a no brainer thing to do, it is your private info, keep it private as it is. It is enough that your government and those that need your info has yours.
- Don't keep all your Bitcoins in one wallet address and use multiple decoy wallets with small amount of coins.
I get it in a way but my question is why do we need to keep small amount of coins on it though?
- Use better security for your seed backups.
This won't matter if the person is a tattler and careless with their devices because when opportunity strikes, the attacks will happen no matter what.
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February 18, 2021, 10:51:33 AM
 #4

I agree, just have a discussion with some of my bitcoin enthusiast friends and this is what we don't want to happen to us, The $5 Wrench Attack.

In 2018, we decided to print T-shirts with bitcoin (BTC) logo and try to go to public places and raise awareness. However, this 2020-2021, we think that this is a bad idea as you don't know, criminals are always around the corner and you could be their target, specially wearing a shirts screaming that you are a bitcoiner, not a good idea anymore.

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February 18, 2021, 10:55:21 AM
 #5

Well, this is one of the reasons privacy/anonymity is very important for a good currency system. If you intentionally or unintentionally expose very valuable things that shouldn't be exposed to anyone you don't trust, you are equally exposing yourself to such attacks. I get a bit worried when people boldly say that a cryptocurrency is not very anonymous. It should be very anonymous, and the network should still be able to track(and possibly de-anonymize) those who hide under the anonymity to commit serious crimes.

*Kyc should be very safe, privacy-friendly and anonymity friendly. It's important that those who handle such data for others are held accountable, or they shouldn't handle kyc data atall. Better to use identity system that's very decentralized and privacy-friendly.

* the splitting of funds/keys into multiple parts for safe storage and usage is also important.







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February 18, 2021, 10:59:21 AM
 #6

This is why I don't want to make any p2p trades for cash, the risk of someone tailing me back to my home and robbing me is too high. Or just getting robbed on the spot.

What can regular people do to reduce this risk?

- Never talk in public how much Bitcoins you own, or maybe don't even say that you even own any Bitcoin.
...

These are solid advises, I would also recommend to invest in physical security - get cameras installed, house alarms, quality locks, etc. Get a gun if you are an American.





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February 18, 2021, 11:12:10 AM
 #7

Do you think it is important to keep somehow private the fact that you own Bitcoin and crypto or you should talk everyone about it?
It is better to keep it private. I'm starting to regret that I've told some of my closest friends that I'm into bitcoin although that was way back in 2017. But there's not that much talk about it and they don't even approach or ask me, how I am today that the market has gone better.

Well, I remain quiet in all of my social media accounts and don't usually talk about cryptocurrencies. I'm avoiding it as much as I can and if someone asks me privately, I'm answering it but I don't talk about amounts of holding and anything that's the same topic as that.

You can choose to whom to talk to about your holdings and it should be those people that you really trust or people who have the same interest as you and you've known for a very long time. But still, be cautious and be careful all of the time.




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February 18, 2021, 11:51:20 AM
 #8

- Never talk in public how much Bitcoins you own, or maybe don't even say that you even own any Bitcoin.
- Try not to reveal your private information with various KYC procedures, or for ordering any crypto related stuff like hardware wallets.
- Don't keep all your Bitcoins in one wallet address and use multiple decoy wallets with small amount of coins.
- Use better security for your seed backups.
One thing missing from this list is the use of passphrase protection for hardware wallets.  If a TREZOR or Ledger is compromised there is a risk of the thief exploiting vulnerabilities in the device to steal coins, especially if there is a large sum of money in the wallet.

With passphrase protection, the user can prevent physical attacks from taking BTC by:

1. Storing a passphrase somewhere very secure e.g. a bank safety deposit box or underground
2. Not remembering the phrase yourself

That way, a thief would be unable to take the coins through a physical attack as they could not coerce you into revealing a password to a computer, PIN for a hardware wallet, etc.

In this way a user could have a 'current account' (not passphrase protected) and a 'savings account' (only accessible by temporarily getting your passphrase out of its safe place).
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February 18, 2021, 11:56:11 AM
 #9

Hence the reason for a more discreet and more private approach to handling your bitcoin and crypto, otherwise you will be an open target to other bad guys that are wanting to make quick buck off of what you already had. Also one of the reasons why sticking to the same address for various reasons is a bad idea: it can always be traced back to you due to the number of footprints and activities that can be linked back to you. Crimes can always be prevented and thwarted before intentions even begin brewing from the criminal's minds. Don't give them a reason to commit a crime against you, and you'll be fine for the most part.

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February 18, 2021, 12:14:16 PM
Last edit: February 18, 2021, 07:40:05 PM by ?QuestionMark?
 #10

First of all selling digital currencies for fiat cash in person is always a very bad idea.

Crypto to Fiat trades in huge amount should not only be avoided due to the high risk of being tricked, but also to the fact that only criminals buy such high amounts in fiat cash.

And with that they use it for money laundering or other crimes.

The woman who got robbed in Hong Kong trying to exchange Tether for a couple of 100k in some shadowy back room of an strange restaurant has only herself to blame.

You need a safe place for your recovery seed and you should always only carry daily use amounts in your mobile wallet.

Which is with bitcoin itself and fees of 14USD unfortunately not possible Wink

And talking in public how rich you are or how expensive things you own is in general a very bad idea. Doesn't care if its its fiat, digital currencies or precious metals.

When talking to a group of people about investment you can just name the amount in procent of bitcoins, or other digital currencies, your holding in your whole portofolio.


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February 18, 2021, 12:18:25 PM
 #11

Hence the reason for a more discreet and more private approach to handling your bitcoin and crypto, otherwise you will be an open target to other bad guys that are wanting to make quick buck off of what you already had. Also one of the reasons why sticking to the same address for various reasons is a bad idea: it can always be traced back to you due to the number of footprints and activities that can be linked back to you. Crimes can always be prevented and thwarted before intentions even begin brewing from the criminal's minds. Don't give them a reason to commit a crime against you, and you'll be fine for the most part.
It is very inspiring what you say on matters like this, because many people keep making mistakes again and again. like you said not to do the same address because after all they will continue to try to dredge what is in the activity carried out from the existing trail.

yes, as long as where there is an easy way to outsmart for the benefits they get. then evil will always lurk to do this, besides indeed we start to properly protect what we have and not repeat the mistakes that have been made.

then we must always be smarter than thieves, although of course thieves will always update what will be done to get it. keep trying to be able to find loopholes that we make mistakes. but unfortunately things like this keep happening again very sad and concerned because if it happened to the most needy, but he could not use it because it was stolen.

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February 18, 2021, 07:04:34 PM
 #12

I agree, just have a discussion with some of my bitcoin enthusiast friends and this is what we don't want to happen to us, The $5 Wrench Attack.

In 2018, we decided to print T-shirts with bitcoin (BTC) logo and try to go to public places and raise awareness. However, this 2020-2021, we think that this is a bad idea as you don't know, criminals are always around the corner and you could be their target, specially wearing a shirts screaming that you are a bitcoiner, not a good idea anymore.

Yes, more wisely is to keep silent about the fact that you own Bitcoin. It is an asset that have a cost, and like every asset it attracts people that would be happy to get them in a very fast and cunning way, without lots of efforts. Assets like silence. Keeping silent, without public shouting will rise up the security for them.
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February 18, 2021, 10:49:54 PM
 #13

Do you think it is important to keep somehow private the fact that you own Bitcoin and crypto or you should talk everyone about it?
I did able to buy my own car due to cryptocurrency profits and earnings and with due to have that kind of proudly feeling about achievement then i do put up some
bitcoin logo and other crypto into my car but when those news do talk about physical attacks wayback then it did really changed off my mind to remove those stickers
and trying to be private or avoid other people to know that im a crypto guy which those criminals that do know crypto will really be easily able to point me out
if i have those indications.Even if you do know your keys but when the time that a gun is pointed at you or into your loved ones or family then you will surely
be giving off those information.

I do agree on that suggestion on having some decoy wallets and never intend to put up all of your coins in one place and that will surely save you up on
losing it all incase you do encounter this situation.

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February 18, 2021, 11:34:07 PM
Last edit: February 19, 2021, 07:47:38 AM by Jaycee99
 #14

Quote
What can regular people do to reduce this risk?

- Never talk in public how much Bitcoins you own, or maybe don't even say that you even own any Bitcoin.
- Try not to reveal your private information with various KYC procedures, or for ordering any crypto related stuff like hardware wallets.
- Don't keep all your Bitcoins in one wallet address and use multiple decoy wallets with small amount of coins.
- Use better security for your seed backups.

Do you think it is important to keep somehow private the fact that you own Bitcoin and crypto or you should talk everyone about it?
These tips or suggestion you made for regular people do to reduce this risk are already common I think by now people should know and here are my concerns

1. I am one of the middle class or regular people but I already know about it that I will not inform everyone I will never talk about how much I own.
 Still, If I am rich and part of the regular people there will be someone or some institution who will ask me and call me if I can announce how much money or bitcoin I bought if this information was given out without my information I can go to court and have them arrest fo it.

2. People will not reveal any private information.

Who will reveal their private information?  to some stranger unless their family. I think you should say or have written is don't and do not write your private information on your phone or devices why anything can hack this day if you did something or interact with something or announce that you did buy bitcoin in a high amount of bitcoin there people will target you.

3. Keeping all your Bitcoins in one wallet address and use multiple decoy wallets.


This is safe but this is not a good idea why? what is the point of keeping it? and containing small amount s if the small amount will only earn low? I suggest by saying, multiple at least for me two wallets is enough big or small is good and safe.

4. Yes, I have nothing to say on this part because people will do it.



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February 18, 2021, 11:51:45 PM
 #15

Having a big number of Bitcoin isn't something we need to show up to the people. Especially, about the private information, including where we are holding the Bitcoin and how we manage it. It is a stupid idea to tell people about it. Don't blame hackers or bad people if you trigger them to target you! That's about how our attitude. If we are careless, it can harm us!!

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February 19, 2021, 02:07:37 AM
 #16

That's the reason why bitcoin anonymity is important because when there's money, there's always people who are willing to commit a crime just to steal it.

We are living in a world where bad things occur and we have nothing to do with that but to become aware and well-informed. Bitcoin is a must to invest but also a must to protect especially that you have a full control of your money and not other people.

That's why it is also important to split our bitcoin, we should store it in a hardware wallet, and at the same time, in a digital wallet as soon as possible.

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February 19, 2021, 02:20:07 AM
 #17

With these incidents, it will now be discouraged to talk about Bitcoin to people. There was a time when it was highly encouraged to insert Bitcoin in whatever casual conversation. That was primarily to somehow promote Bitcoin as well as to make friends, loved ones, workmates, etc familiar with Bitcoin and its basic features and objectives.

This has become an old practice now. Bitcoin has become so valuable today and surely in the years to come that your mention of Bitcoin to anybody might actually put you in danger.

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February 19, 2021, 06:52:01 AM
 #18

That's the reason why bitcoin anonymity is important because when there's money, there's always people who are willing to commit a crime just to steal it.

Bitcoin is not anonymous. Its pseudo anonymous. The tracking and linking of your identity to a bitcoin address is pretty easy as soon as you exchanged somewhere, which is basiclly almost everyone.

Its a myth which many people still believe in and criminals start using it for comitting crimes. In fact almost over 400 darknet marketplaces and many cyber criminals have been taken down not due to their bad infrastructure but due to the fact that they used bitcoin.
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February 19, 2021, 09:13:13 AM
 #19

Having a big number of Bitcoin isn't something we need to show up to the people. Especially, about the private information, including where we are holding the Bitcoin and how we manage it. It is a stupid idea to tell people about it. Don't blame hackers or bad people if you trigger them to target you! That's about how our attitude. If we are careless, it can harm us!!
This may not be the case in many cases, there are some people that are not disclosing their information, but yet were attacked. I remember the last one I read about a woman that has been having crypto deals with a dealer, she had made consecutive deals with them which makes her to build trust for them not knowing they are criminals. She later had another deal with them, telling them to meet her in her office. The trusted criminals got to her office just to attack her, got the money from her and send no crypto to her and flee. Although no harm but it was still a crypto physical attack. There has been several cases like that which I believe people are learning from now, as for me, I can not have a meeting crypto deals with anyone, I will rather say doing my p2p and making sure the escrow service is used in a reputable exchange, in this regard, no harm will be done after I will log into my bank account that truly the money have reflected.

Secondly, your opinion is good, we should not link out identity to our bitcoin addresses, bitcoin is not anonymous but pseudonymous, we should take advantage of the pseudonymity by making our bitcoin not linked to us, this can be done through privacy ways of handling transactions, like using coinjoin, mixers and other possible things we think can help to increase our privacy.  Because if a transaction is linked to our identity, and if the amount is huge, physical attack is very possible as the blockchain is accessed by the while public.

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February 19, 2021, 10:08:19 AM
 #20

Having a big number of Bitcoin isn't something we need to show up to the people. Especially, about the private information, including where we are holding the Bitcoin and how we manage it. It is a stupid idea to tell people about it. Don't blame hackers or bad people if you trigger them to target you! That's about how our attitude. If we are careless, it can harm us!!
Yep, it's kinda you are luring those attackers to you if ever you disclosing your portfolio or how much Bitcoin you hold. Staying lowkey or off the radar is nice. But we can't force people, there are a lot of people who are showy or very happy disclosing their wealth online, especially on social media, I know some people like that non-crypto or crypto-related.






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