The restoration of the stolen BTC from the 2016 Bitfinex hack was the information of the day. That story’s protagonists, although, they’re legends within the making. You possibly can already inform that Ilya Lichtenstein and Heather Morgan will stay ceaselessly in meme type. The story is so unlikely that many individuals within the Bitcoin group are uncertain that it occurred as reported.
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May this tech entrepreneur and this author/ rapper have hacked a cryptocurrency alternate? Or are they only the cash launderers for a much bigger operation? And, did they actually save the personal keys to billions in BTC on the cloud? Or had been they arrange? Is regulation enforcement taking part in methods on the general public or are they the heroes of the day?
Think about being a hacker (or cash launderer) and holding the unencrypted personal keys to $3.5billion of #Bitcoin in a web based account linked to your identify
Thoughts blown 🤯
— Alistair Milne (@alistairmilne) February 8, 2022
We are able to’t reply these questions in the intervening time. What we are able to do is discover the Bitfinex hackers’ social media to get a way of who they’re. However first, a abstract.
What’s The Bitfinex Hack All About? And, Why Is It Related Now?
The “Statement Of Facts” available at the justice.gov web site does a great job setting the stage:
“In or round August 2016, a hacker breached Sufferer VCE’s safety methods and infiltrated its infrastructure. Whereas inside Sufferer VCE’s community, the hacker was capable of provoke over 2,000 unauthorized BTC transactions, by which roughly 119,754 BTC was transferred from Sufferer VCE’s wallets4 to an outdoor pockets (Pockets 1CGA4s5 ). On the time of the breach, 119,754 BTC was valued at roughly $71 million. As a result of improve within the value6 of BTC because the breach, the stolen funds are valued at over $4.5 billion as of February 2022.“
That cash ended up in a Bitcoin handle related to Ilya Lichtenstein and Heather Morgan, however discover that regulation enforcement by no means says they’re the Bitfinex hackers. In truth, the couple has solely been charged with cash laundering. However, what’s the story right here? Our sister web site Bitcoinist does a good job thickening the plot:
“The suspects had been arrested in Manhattan, New York. Deputy Legal professional Basic Lisa Monaco referred to as the arrest, one of many largest by way of monetary seizure in historical past.
In that sense, the federal government official acknowledged that Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies aren’t a “secure haven” for criminals. The assertion contradicts others made by public officers, comparable to Senator Elizabeth Warren, which have emphasised the alleged use of crypto in legal actions. Monaco added:
“In a futile effort to keep up digital anonymity, the defendants laundered stolen funds via a labyrinth of cryptocurrency transactions. Due to the meticulous work of regulation enforcement, the division as soon as once more confirmed the way it can and can observe the cash, it doesn’t matter what type it takes.”
Think about sitting on $4,000,000,000 in stolen bitcoin, figuring out you are being hunted by nation states, and deciding that NYC is a brilliant place to gap up.
— Jameson Lopp (@lopp) February 8, 2022
Who Is Dutch Ilya Lichtenstein?
Reportedly, Ilya Lichtenstein is a tech entrepreneur and YCombinator alum. In his Twitter, he defines himself as a “Human angel investor, web3 developer, serial entrepreneur.” In his most vital tweet, Dutch criticizes a New York Journal article by saying, “Oh god no. So many phrases about posering on Twitter, nearly nothing about how you can safe your keys, ship a transaction or get a Defi mortgage.”
— Dutch Lichtenstein (@unrealdutch) November 30, 2021
Does that appear just like the Bitfinex hacker to you? Or, extra importantly, does that appear like an individual who would retailer his personal keys within the cloud? We wouldn’t know. Nevertheless, the justice.org report says:
“On January 31, 2022, regulation enforcement gained entry to Pockets 1CGA4s by decrypting a file saved to LICHTENSTEIN’s cloud storage account,8 which had been obtained pursuant to a search warrant. The file contained a listing of two,000 digital foreign money addresses, together with corresponding personal keys. Blockchain evaluation confirmed that the majority of these addresses had been instantly linked to the hack.”
Bitfinex hackers… LOL… yeah positive pic.twitter.com/rFKwm3Eico
— Psychedelic El ₿arto (@PsychedelicBart) February 8, 2022
In any case, in an article titled “Rethinking the Ethereum Wallet for Mass Adoption,” within the “Persons are fearful of hackers and malware” part, Ilya Lichtenstein says:
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“The most important risk to mass adoption is no doubt, safety. It’s nonetheless means too exhausting to correctly safe plain textual content personal keys with out making a mistake alongside the way in which. We can’t count on mainstream customers to be safety specialists in a world the place the commonest password remains to be “123456”. Safety must be in-built to the product by design, not left up the consumer.”
BTC worth chart for 02/09/2022 on Oanda | Supply: BTC/USD on TradingView.com
Who Is Heather Morgan AKA Razzlekhan?
Reportedly, Heather Morgan is a profitable copywriter who grew her personal enterprise with out outdoors buyers. On her Twitter web page, she defines herself as a “Serial entrepreneur. SaaS Investor. Razzlekhan. Surrealist Artist, Rapper & Trend Designer with synesthesia. Additionally Forbes author.”
Her most vital tweet says: “Good guiding compass to stay by: How a lot of a POSITIVE IMPACT does your life have on others, together with society & nature?”
Good guiding compass to stay by:
How a lot of a POSITIVE IMPACT does your life have on others, together with society & nature?
— Heather R Morgan (rzk.eth) (@HeatherReyhan) January 15, 2022
The explanation she’s way more fascinating than her husband is her rap alter ego, Razzlekhan. Her movies aren’t obtainable on YouTube anymore, however you may nonetheless listen to the songs on Soundcloud. And, some Twitter customers captured clips of the movies earlier than they disappeared:
— RSN (@puttinyadown) February 8, 2022
Under, there’s one other observe. Above, there’s a pattern of the couple’s Tik Tok content material:
— Warren Buckets 🔺 (@shillingbears) February 8, 2022
Extra fascinating but, although, is Morgan’s profession as a Forbes author. In her article titled “Experts Share Tips To Protect Your Business From Cybercriminals,” the supposed Bitfinex hacker says:
“Corporations that didn’t have already got distributed groups or earn a living from home insurance policies have struggled to transition to going absolutely distant amidst the pandemic.
Cybercriminals and fraudsters are making the most of this surprising disruption, resulting in a spike in scams and cybercrime.”
Defend your organization and shoppers from cyber crimes. BitGo’s Chief Compliance Officer, Matt Parrella, discusses methods with @HeatherReyhan. Consultants Share Ideas To Defend Your Enterprise From Cybercriminals by way of @forbes https://t.co/MaNzge6vKq
— BitGo (@BitGo) June 18, 2020
Wacky music apart, does that sound like an individual who would launder cash via present playing cards registered below her actual identify? We wouldn’t know, however the justice.org report says:
“Information confirmed that parts of the $500 present card had been then redeemed via three transactions for private gadgets by way of the Walmart iPhone utility. Every of the three redemptions had been performed on-line below MORGAN’s identify, utilizing one in every of MORGAN’s electronic mail addresses, and offering MORGAN and LICHTENSTEIN’s residence handle for supply.”
What Does The Twitterati Assume About The Alleged Bitfinex Hackers?
Bitcoin investor Alistair Milne questions the couple’s Opsec, “Think about being a hacker (or cash launderer) and holding the unencrypted personal keys to $3.5billion of Bitcoin in a web based account linked to your identify.” Bitcoin safety skilled Jameson Lopp questions their selection of location, “Think about sitting on $4,000,000,000 in stolen bitcoin, figuring out you’re being hunted by nation states, and deciding that NYC is a brilliant place to gap up.”
Featured Picture: The alleged Bitfinex hackers from this tweet | Charts by TradingView