Published: Thu, March 14, 2019
Finance | By Loren Pratt

Canadian police needs help to find 4 criminals in $200K Bitcoin fraud

Canadian police needs help to find 4 criminals in $200K Bitcoin fraud

It seems that replace-by-fee tools, developed by Peter Todd, the developer of Bitcoin Core, were what allowed the transactions to go through.

And just when we thought we have heard the last of such crimes, the Calgary Police Service posted a news release urging the public to help with the investigation of what you can call a "mass crypto fraud" in which four individuals (so far; the investigation is still ongoing) are allegedly responsible for committing 112 fraudulent attacks within the space of 10 days.

According to the police profiling, one of the suspects has attacked in the Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa and Hamilton area, while the other took the Calgary area for the attacks.

The release stated that the Cybercrime Team of the Calgary Police Service received alarming reports of several fraudulent transactions involving Bitcoin in October 2018.

Each of the four suspects in the Bitcoin ATM fraud is believed to have targeted a different area.


The men succeeded in their theft because they exploited the Bitcoin ATMs' zero-confirmation transactions to double-spend Bitcoin in exchange for money.

Law enforcement teams in Calgary are spearheading a nationwide investigation into a suspected Bitcoin fraud ring that made off with almost $200,000 in a little over a week. While it was not created to facilitate theft, the tool lets "stuck" transactions to become released for the cost of an extra fee. Those with information on the case can submit anonymous tips. The goal of 0-conf is to create instantaneous transactions for instances when the 10-minute Bitcoin transaction throughput time would not be convenient.

Some miners won't accept transactions with these output types; those miners will accept the second double-spend transaction, helping you achieve a successful double-spend.
That creates two transactions in succession, one paying a specific amount to a specific address, and a second one double-spending that transaction.

Police say the male suspects may have in-depth knowledge or interest in cryptocurrency, bitcoin and/or blockchain technology.

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