US Justice Department Implicates Three Individuals In Infamous $400 Million FTX Hack

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The US Department of Justice (DoJ) has charged three individuals with stealing more than $400 million from the bankrupt FTX exchange in a SIM-swapping attack.

The indictment mentions only Victim Company-1 but Bloomberg cited sources saying that entity is beleaguered crypto exchange FTX.

The three individuals, Carter Rohn, Emily Hernandez, and Robert Powell, stole money from cryptocurrency investors between March 2021 and April 2023, according to a court indictment.

Prosecutors state that the three conducted a SIM-Swap attack against the company on November 11, 2022. The perpetrators impersonated an FTX employee and obtained access to their AT&T account before siphoning funds.

Following the attack, over $400 million worth of crypto was stolen from the company’s digital wallets.

The prosecutors are charging the three with conspiracy to commit wire fraud and identity theft.

FTX Breach

The FTX hack happened after the exchange had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. The funds have since been moved through different blockchains and bridges.

FTX CEO John J. Ray III attributed the hack to a lack of proper security safeguards. He said the exchange’s security was poor, making it a good target for SIM-swapping attacks.

A blog post by blockchain security firm Elliptic says that just last week, crypto stolen from FTX valued at tens of millions of dollars was on the move again after remaining dormant for months.

SIM swapping attacks allow hackers to access multifactor authentication codes used to log in to accounts. Early last month, the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) was victim to a similar attack on its Twitter account.

The solved mystery of the $400M hack on FTX comes after the exchange said that it expects to repay all creditors in full.

But it said it wouldn’t restart the exchange because it lacked an investor and the capital needed.

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