The Dutch publication, De Telegraaf, has reported that three burglars disguised as police officers have attacked a Bitcoin trader in his own home. The man was threatened with firearms and was tortured with a “heavy drill” for more than an hour, all in front of his small four-year-old daughter.
The victim lives in the ancient province of Drenthe in the northeastern part of the country. His house was apparently paid for in cash.
De Telegraaf’s own research found that the victim was a trader in cryptocurrencies, which the local police have confirmed. The Dutch police team, who are more regularly used to overseeing murder investigations, are working on the case, which shows just how grievous the incident was and the seriousness of the authorities on solving the crime. At present, there is no information suggesting that any of the victim’s cryptocurrency was stolen.
Crypto Investors Must Be Discreet
It used to be that crypto traders were concerned about online extortion or theft, but the threat has evolved. People have become victims of criminals who attack them at home or in the street, in “real life”. In the least violent episodes, people have been forced to deposit digital currency into anonymous wallets, but crime is often closely followed by violence.
A Russian blogger and crypto investor, Pavel Nyashin, was attacked in his home in Leningrad last year. He was tied up and badly beaten and the thieves made off with funds worth $425 000. Although they didn’t take any of his digital currencies, they did take the laptop that he used for trading.
Pavel Lerner, the managing director of the cryptocurrency exchange EXMO was kidnapped in Kiev in December 2017. Abducted while leaving his office, he was taken by “unknown persons” and was only released after paying the kidnappers $1 million in Bitcoin.
As well as online safety, people who trade in cryptocurrencies should be particularly careful about what they say and who they say it to. Investors should be discreet.
“Just because this info is public on the blockchain doesn’t mean you need to go bragging about how much crypto you have or giving out the address to your private crypto savings,” said Max Niebylski, CEO of Gladius, a cyber-protection network. “You should treat it with the same caution as other highly sensitive information”.