21 Year Old Hacker Faces a Decade in the Slammer for SIM Swapping and Stealing $7.5 Million USD
Student Goes To Jail For 10 Years After Siphoning $7.5 Million USD Worth in With SIM Swapping Scenario
SIM swapping has become a huge problem in the United States. People clone the SIM cards of the victims and then use it to hack their phones. The practice is known as SIM swapping and it is commonly used to steal cryptos.
Now, a 21-year-old Boston student will pass 10 years in jail after he was convicted of SIM swapping, the first time ever in which a person is actually convicted for this crime in the country.
The man, Joel Ortiz, was a student from UMass Boston and he targeted the people who attended a specific Coindesk conference, Consensus. He stole over $7.5 million USD from them by hacking their phones.
At least 40 victims were harmed by the man, which was deemed by the law as a prolific SIM swapper. He also stole social media accounts in order to sell them for BTC later. According to the police, the hack was done in minutes and he profited over $5 million USD at the time.
As most of the SIM swappers do, Ortiz started to live a lavish life after the crimes. He hired a helicopter, had Gucci luggage and clothing and spent over $10,000 USD on a night club in Los Angeles once.
Now, the SIM swapper was sentenced to a decade in prison by Judge Edward Lee from the Santa Clara County. Many victims had their lives destroyed after the theft. He was charged with 10 felony charges and pleaded no contest (accepted the charges but not necessarily affirmed that he was guilty).
The judge of the case affirmed that Ortiz was no Robin Hood, he was a “crook who uses a computer instead of a gun” and that he stole college funds, home mortgages and the finances that were important to these people.
After the arrest, the financial task force investigating the crime was able to get $400,000 USD back from him, but most of the money is still missing.
Companies Are Not Doing Enough To Prevent These Crimes
Most of the SIM swapping cases that occurred so far are done because companies are not able to prevent them. People pose as their targets and claim that they lost their SIM cards, so they get new ones. Generally, criminals steal social security numbers and addresses to do it.
With the help of cloned SIM cards, users can overcome two-factor authentication processes and be able to get the money of the victims.
Several victims have started to sue companies because of this since they believe that they are guilty of letting this happen. The problem is growing very fast in the United States and carrier companies will have to upgrade their security measures in order to prevent this crime from happening or we will have to wait for the authorities to arrest people after the crimes like this time.
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