$1.8 Million Crypto SIM Swap Case to Continue to Court

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  • $1.8 million crypto SIM swap case against AT&T will go ahead following judge’s ruling
  • AT&T got some charges thrown out, but more serious ones remain
  • Company faces two crypto SIM swap lawsuits

A $1.8 million crypto SIM swap case will continue after a judge rejected the telecom giant’s attempt to dismiss the suit. US District Judge Consuelo Marshall ruled this week that the case can go ahead on some of the grounds put forward by Seth Shapiro’s legal team, although AT&T did manage to get some lesser charges dismissed. The AT&T crypto SIM swap case revolves around the theft of $1.8 million worth of cryptocurrency from Shapiro’s phone between 2018 and 2019, with Shapiro alleging that the carrier’s employees helped hackers perform the SIM swap attacks that led to the thefts.

Four Hacks in One Year

The AT&T crypto SIM swap case began in October 2019 when Shapiro filed a complaint against the company, following the fourth attack on his device in just over a year. Shapiro claims that AT&T employees were implicit in the thefts in return for a financial incentive, obtaining
unauthorized access to his account and transferring control to a phone controlled by hackers in exchange for money.

The hackers were then able to transfer cryptocurrency out of his mobile wallets, totaling $1.8 million given the valuation of the tokens at the time of the thefts.

AT&T Gets Some Charges Thrown Out

AT&T tried to dismiss the charges based largely on technicalities with regard to their levels of responsibility toward Shapiro, with partial success. In her judgement, Judge Marshall granted some elements of the various grounds for dismissal and denied others, with AT&T managing to get one count of privacy rights violation and one count of violation of California’s Consumer Legal Remedies Act thrown out.

The case will now go forward on two counts of negligence and negligent supervision and entrustment and one count of violation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, with AT&T laid open to a huge financial penalty should they be found guilty.

AT&T Getting it From Both Sides

Shapiro’s is not the only AT&T crypto SIM swap case currently going through courts. Blockchain investor Michael Terpin is suing the company for a staggering $224 million on almost identical grounds to Shapiro, suggesting that AT&T employees worked with hackers to allow the theft of Terpin’s cryptocurrency through facilitating SIM swaps.