Beijing Employee Arrested for Stealing 100 Bitcoins from His Own Company

A system administrator identified as 'Zhongmou' was taken into custody by police on January 2nd.

According to a report by Chinese news source XinhuaNet, Beijing police have identified and arrested a system administrator for the theft of 100 bitcoins from the unidentified technology company that he is–er, was–employed at.  At current valuation, the stolen BTC are worth about $1.1 million.

The administrator, who has been identified as a man named Zhongmou, alleged used his access to the company’s computer systems to “revise” the programming in a way that allowed him to steal the BTC, which the company had obtained through mining.

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The story began on September 25, 2017, when police at the Haidian Branch of Beijing Municipal Public Security Bureau received a call from the unnamed company.  The company explained to the authorities that they had discovered that their internal network had been invaded by a hacker based in a ‘remote location.’

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The investigation that followed revealed that despite the fact that the hacker appeared to have attacked the company’s network from the outside, the point of entry into the system had been through a password-protected portal. After discovering that the password had been used to access the system, the thief was suspected to have been an internal actor.

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After identifying Zhongmou as a suspect, police took the administrator into custody in the ‘early hours’ of January 2.  After being arrested, Zhongmou admitted that he had used his privileges as an administrator to gain access to the database that contained the company’s Bitcoin wallet.  Zhongmou then cracked the passcode to the wallet and made off with the BTC.

Despite the fact that Zhongmou’s crime constitutes the larceny of more than $1 million in crypto, he hasn’t been charged with theft–at least, not yet. He is reportedly being held by authorities on ‘suspicion of damaging computer information systems’.

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