Canadian authorities seek $150k double Bitcoin spending on ATM suspects

Daniel Fowler
March 14, 2019

According to reports, this was made possible by quickly cancelling transactions before the Bitcoin ATMs targeted could process them.

Canadian police are on the hunt for four individuals, suspected of a defrauding a local bitcoin company via "double spend" attacks on Bitcoin ATMs.

Calgary police began its investigations in October after the swindled Bitcoin ATM company alerted them of the issue.

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

CCTV footage of the four suspects has been provided by Calgary police, with assistance from authorities in Ontario and Manitoba.

The attacks were carried out at a point that the Bitcoin ATMs accepted zero-confirmation transactions.

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Canadian media reported that a total of one hundred and twelve (112) transactions have been made through the country where most took place in the Calgary province. The cities which fell victim to the attack include Calgary, Toronto, Montreal, Winnipeg, Sherwood Park, Ottawa and Hamilton. While it was not created to facilitate theft, the tool lets "stuck" transactions to become released for the cost of an extra fee.

Authentic double spend attacks either involve exploiting a code defect in a crypto network's software or a "51% attack"(brute force attack) on a cryptographic ledger's processing of transactions. The second double-spends that transaction with a transaction with higher fees, paying only the change address.

Four suspects with what police describe as "in-depth knowledge or interest in cryptocurrency, bitcoin and/or blockchain technology" are accused of defrauding the bitcoin company of almost $200,000 through "double spend attacks". In addition, you can optionally specify that the first transaction additional OP-RETURN, multisig, and "blacklisted" address outputs.

Suspect One: Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa and Hamilton.

Individuals with any leads can submit their tips to Crime Stoppers.

None of these companies confirmed if they allow for 0-confirmation transactions or not.

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