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· Bitcoin traders Raees Cajee, 21 and Ameer, 18, fled South Africa in April after telling investors their company, Africrypt, had been hacked and all its funds stolen. The two have been accused of carrying out one of the biggest Bitcoin heists in history, making off with £billion of the Henry Holloway.  · The alleged heist comes after another South African bitcoin trader, Mirror Trading International, collapsed last year. The losses included about $ billion in cryptos, with some calling it Author: Will Feuer.  · Some 11 people were arrested, including a security guard, in what Icelandic media have dubbed the „Big Bitcoin Heist.“ A judge at the Reykjanes District Court on Estimated Reading Time: 3 mins.  · It’s known as the ‘Big Bitcoin Heist’. To cut a long story short, year-old Sindri Thor Stefansson allegedly stole about Bitcoin mining units from a warehouse near Iceland’s capital city Reykjavik. The theft was not the first of a wahre-wahrheit.deted Reading Time: 8 mins.

REYKJAVIK, Iceland — Some computers used to „mine“ bitcoin and other virtual currencies have been stolen from data centers in Iceland in what police say is the biggest series of thefts ever in the North Atlantic island nation. Some 11 people were arrested, including a security guard, in what Icelandic media have dubbed the „Big Bitcoin Heist. But if the stolen equipment is used for its original purpose — to create new bitcoins — the thieves could turn a massive profit in an untraceable currency without ever selling the items.

Three of four burglaries took place in December and a fourth took place in January, but authorities did not make the news public earlier in hopes of tracking down the thieves. Bitcoin is a kind of digital money that isn’t tied to a bank or a government. It has been hugely volatile, posting some dizzying intra-day rises and falls over the past year or so. Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies rely on the blockchain, the name given to the public, distributed ledgers which track the coins‘ ownership.

The Bitcoin ledger is powered by „miners,“ so-called because they throw computational power into the system, occasionally receiving — or „mining“ — new bitcoins in return. Drumming up that computational power usually means lots of computers — and thus lots of electricity. That desire for energy has created a gold rush for bitcoin in Iceland. Traders searching for cheap, renewable energy have been flooding into the island in recent months to take advantage of its geothermal and hydroelectric power plants.

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The suspected mastermind behind the theft of computers used to mine bitcoin in Iceland has escaped from prison and fled to Sweden on an aeroplane reportedly carrying the Icelandic prime minister. Sindri Thor Stefansson escaped through a window of the low-security Sogn prison in rural southern Iceland before boarding a flight to Sweden at the international airport in Keflavik located 59 miles from the prison on Tuesday.

Guards at the prison, which has no fences and where inmates have access to the internet and phones, did not report him missing until after the flight to Sweden had taken off. Stefansson had been in custody since February, but was moved to the low-security prison 11 days ago. An international warrant has since been issued for his arrest, but Swedish police spokesman Stefan Dangardt said no arrest has been made in Sweden.

Police have arrested 22 people altogether, including a security guard, without solving the burglaries. Helgi Gunnlaugsson, a sociology professor at the University of Iceland, said keeping a high-profile prisoner in such low-security surroundings was unusual but more so was his organised escape. Iceland has become a hotspot of for data centres and cryptocurrency mining thanks to its abundance of renewable energy and cold climate, which provides low electricity prices and lower cooling costs for the high-powered computer equipment.

The low costs have made it easier for cryptocurrency miners to turn a profit, but have also led to the operators within Iceland consuming more electricity with their intensive computing endeavors than households. World Europe US Americas Asia Australia Middle East Africa Inequality Global development. This article is more than 3 years old. Stefansson is the suspected mastermind behind the theft of computers used to mine bitcoin.

Samuel Gibbs.

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Ever since a single Bitcoin became worth a small fortune, there have been people trying to steal them. Sure, there have some small-time thieves who’ve stolen a few hundred dollars worth of Bitcoin here and there. But there have also been heists. Massive, highly orchestrated attacks that lead to millions of dollars worth of cryptocurrency changing hands.

And they just keep happening. How many heists? Well, in the last three years alone—sort of the relevant lifetime of Bitcoin—there have been six really major robberies. And by major, I mean hundreds of thousands if not hundreds of millions of dollars worth of Bitcoin getting snatched. Think of this as the six best reasons to not invest your life savings in Bitcoin. This week, researchers at the security firm Trustwave uncovered a massive attack involving the Pony botnet , a particularly nasty piece of malware that has been used to steal two million login credentials for websites like Facebook and Twitter.

This time around, the botnet infected over , accounts of varying types between September and January , including the login information for , email accounts. It also compromised 85 Bitcoin wallets.

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By Will Feuer. June 24, am Updated June 24, am. Hanekom has also reported the matter to South African financial regulators and crypto exchanges around the world. But in April, as the price of bitcoin surged to an all-time high, Ameer, who serves as chief operating officer of Africrypt, sent an email to investors telling them that the company had been hacked.

Ameer made an unusual request, asking clients not to report the incident to authorities or lawyers, saying that it would slow down their efforts to recover from the hacking. When reached for comment, Ameer Cajee responded Thursday by email, directing The Post to his attorney for comment, but did not identify his attorney or provide contact information.

ITWeb reported that a South African judge ruled in favor of a group of about 20 investors, granting a provisional liquidation order against the brothers in April. They have until July 19 to argue against the liquidation, the outlet reported. The alleged heist comes after another South African bitcoin trader, Mirror Trading International, collapsed last year. The two Cajee brothers were profiled in a December cover story by local outlet The Umhlanga Magazine.

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Weeks later year-old Sindri Stefansson was caught and sent to a low-level prison. Days later he fled through a window, hopped on a plane to Stockholm delivering Prime Minister Katrin Jakobsdottir to a political meeting, and became an international fugitive. Stefansson was later caught and is currently in custody. But questions remain: how did he remove machines without alerting suspicion? Where are they now?

Is a crime syndicate involved? Insiders have told Red Herring the computers may well have been shipped abroad already. Others believe they are stashed somewhere in Iceland, which makes one wonder what the initial crime aimed to achieve. Five hundred Bitcoin mining machines are installed in Iceland each day. Low electricity prices, thanks to abundant geothermal energy, and chilly temperatures, contribute to one of the best national grids on earth for crypto-diggers.

This year Iceland will expend more electricity on Bitcoin than powering homes for its , citizens. Iceland even has its own cryptocurrency, Auroracoin.

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Local authorities say this is the largest series of thefts ever to strike the region. The heist took place over four separate burglaries spanning the months of December and January. However, local authorities held off on making the information public in an effort to thwart those involved. On Friday, a local judge ruled that two of the criminals are to remain in custody. However, authorities fear that if the devices are used for their original purpose the criminals stand to make a massive untraceable profit via cryptocurrency.

The police commissioner on the southwestern Reykjanes peninsula, Olafur Helgi Kjartansson said:. In an effort to locate the missing devices authorities are now working with local internet providers, electricians, and storage unit owners to monitor and report any unusual surge in power or request for additional power use. Experts predict that by the end of this year, Bitcoin BTC mining will draw more energy than all , Icelandic residents combined.

Your email address will not be published. This is a very interesting chart because it shows the global professionals reacting to the news much faster than the private traders and it might be suggested this hike is the result of Middle Eastern retail piling into BTC as a flight to safety rather than the relatively non-existent institutional money.

Longer term, however, it is clear to see that in instances where there is trouble in capital controlled countries like Iran and China, bitcoin will be a key asset when times get sketchy. As such, for those speculators who think of gold and oil as the place to trade when war in the Middle East is on the rise, then bitcoin is the place to be.

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By CCN. Ringleader Sindri Stefanson bagged the longest sentence with a jail term of four-and-a-half years. In all, seven people were charged in the case that saw over cryptocurrency mining rigs stolen. The thieves stole the items over the course of three trips spanning a few weeks beginning on December 5, Mastermind Stefansson achieved global notoriety after his initial arrest when he escaped from his prison cell in Iceland and boarded a commercial flight to Stockholm, Sweden.

From there, he connected to Germany via train, ferry, and taxi, but his luck ran out in Amsterdam where he was apprehended after having been declared an international fugitive with his mugshot widely circulated. Interestingly, Stefansson did not face punishment for escaping from prison, as it is not a crime in Iceland.

While in Amsterdam, he famously gave an interview to the New York Times where he expressed regret at going on the lam. He claimed, among other things, that he was eager to go back to prison in Iceland as he was underfed and felt threatened in Amsterdam. Stefansson, who had several priors and a long rap sheet, was charged with theft and sentenced to four-and-a-half years in prison.

The final two suspects got off with lighter punishments.

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In what Icelandic media is calling the “Big Bitcoin Heist.” computers used to mine Bitcoin (BTC) and other cryptocurrencies have been stolen from data centers in Reykjavik, Iceland. Local authorities say this is the largest series of thefts ever to strike the region. The heist took place over four separate burglaries spanning the months [ ]. 21/01/ · By Suspects in the “Big Bitcoin Heist” of have been sentenced to various prison terms based on their level of involvement in the much .

Ahhh, Iceland. Of course, where miners go, thieves are sure to follow. Three heists happened in December and a fourth took place in January. They could easily have been stripped for parts — be they the currently scarce GPUs , the RAM or the fast solid-state disks — and shipped piecemeal for sale anywhere. A judge at the Reykjanes District Court on Friday ordered two people to remain in custody.

AP quoted Olafur Helgi Kjartansson, the police commissioner on the southwestern Reykjanes peninsula, where two of the raids took place:. This is a grand theft on a scale unseen before. Everything points to this being a highly organized crime. Police are keeping an eye out for unusually spiked energy usage across the country that could lead them to the servers, according to an industry source who spoke with AP under condition of anonymity.

Icelandic authorities have called on local internet service providers ISPs , electricians and storage space units to report any unusual requests for power. Of course, if the servers have been carved up and shipped out, that could well turn out to be a dead end. At any rate, back to the newly lengthened list of ways to rip off people in these frenzied days of seeking fast cryptocoin riches.

Now, we can add hardware kidnapping to that list.

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