Two Israeli brothers arrested in connection with the 2016 Bitfinex hack

23 Jun, 2019 | Updated: 23 Jun, 2019
by Richard Allen
Two Israeli brothers arrested in connection with the 2016 Bitfinex hack

Two brothers from Jerusalem, Israel have been arrested in connection with the 2016 hack of cryptocurrency exchange Bitfinex, as well as for stealing cryptocurrencies through a phishing scheme, Finance Magnates reports

After reaching out to an Israeli Police spokesperson, Finance Magnates reports that Eli Gigi and his younger brother Assaf Gigi have netted “tens of millions of dollars.” The two are suspected of carrying out a long and systematic theft of cryptocurrencies by illegally accessing traders’ wallets.

The brothers allegedly set up clones of prominent crypto exchanges and wallets and lured traders in by publishing links to those sites on Telegram groups and other trading oriented forums. Once the traders had clicked the links and submitted their private keys, the brothers collected the information and transferred the copy into their own accounts.

The two are also suspected of being behind the 2016 Bitfinex hack that resulted in the loss of 119,756 BTC. As Chepicap reported, the stolen Bitcoin had recently begun moving around.

The Israeli police note that the victims are mostly from the EU and the US, resulting in the case being investigated by law enforcement agencies from several countries.

During a raid conducted earlier this week on Eli Gigi’s house, police found a crypto wallet containing significantly fewer funds than the amount the two are suspected of stealing. Furthermore, Eli Gigi is a graduate of an elite technological unit of the Israeli Defence Force that recruits youth with outstanding academic capabilities, according to the publication.

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