Nicholas Truglia Charged With SIM-Swapping $1 Million In Crypto

November 21, 2018 8:57 PM

“It’s pretty common for people to target people who have a lot of cryptocurrency.”

ETHNews recently covered arbitration claims levied at telecommunication companies AT&T and T-Mobile by Silver Miller, a law firm that advocates for crypto investors. The firm’s filings claimed that the companies had failed to protect customers from SIM swapping hacks.

Yesterday, November 20, such a hacker was arrested in Manhattan. Nicholas Truglia has reportedly been charged with SIM-swapping $1 million in crypto from San Franciscan Robert Ross and targeting six more Silicon Valley executives.

A SIM-swapping hack occurs when a hacker convinces cell phone company representatives to port another customer’s phone number to the hacker’s phone, potentially giving the thief access to the victim’s email, banking, and investment accounts. This is the method Truglia allegedly used to steal a combined $1 million from Ross’ Coinbase and Gemini accounts, as reported by The New York Post.

Allegedly, Truglia then converted the stolen money into cryptocurrency and stored it in his own wallet. Ross was not his only target, however. Erin West, deputy district attorney for Santa Clara, noted that Truglia’s would-be victims included the CEO of the blockchain storage service 0Chain, a vice president of Hall Capital Partners, and the co-founder of the startup SMBX.

Federal agents were able to recover $300,000 in stolen funds from a hardware wallet found in Truglia’s apartment. The Manhattanite faces 21 felony counts.

The Boy Who Cried Crypto?

Strangely enough, this isn’t the first time Truglia has been in the headlines for crypto-related thievery. In September of this year, the Post reported that Truglia had filed claims against four of his friends, stating that they had demanded he “provide [them] with login information for his cryptocurrency account while holding his head underwater in the bathtub, punching him in the stomach and throwing hot wax on him.” The account apparently held $1.2 million in bitcoin.

Each of the four friends were charged with second-degree burglary and released on bail. They are due back in court on March 14 to find out whether they will be indicted. The Post quoted Truglia at the time as saying, “It’s pretty common for people to target people who have a lot of cryptocurrency.”

Nicholas Ruggieri studied English with an emphasis in creative writing at the University of Nevada, Reno. When he’s not quoting Vines at anyone who’s willing to listen, you’ll find him listening to too many podcasts, reading too many books, and crocheting too many sweaters for his dogs, RT and Peterman.

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