FBI say crypto thieves used Call of Duty to co-ordinate theft of over $3 million - Dexerto
Call of Duty

FBI say crypto thieves used Call of Duty to co-ordinate theft of over $3 million

Published: 30/Oct/2018 12:37 Updated: 30/Oct/2018 12:47

by Calum Patterson


A group of criminals have been busted by the FBI, after reportedly stealing $3.3 million in various cryptocurrencies, using Call of Duty to co-ordinate their efforts.

According to the Chicago-Sun Times, the ring of cybercriminals used a computer and mobile phone hacking scheme to access victims various types of cryptocurrency accounts.

A man from Bloomington, Illinois, who was part of the criminal group, claims he met and was intimidated by the hackers while playing Call of Duty, and they forced him to participate under the threat of SWATting.

According to the report, the criminals would communicate over Call of Duty to co-ordinate their efforts, stealing millions in the process.

The Bloomington man says the hackers would give him names, phone numbers and other necessary info to grant him access to mobile phones of victims. He hacked over 100 phones, according to the FBI affidavit.

He claims that if he refused, they would threaten to SWAT his home – meaning sending a false alarm to authorities in the hope of causing enough concern that a SWAT team raids the address.

However, a real raid did take place, as the FBI searched a suspect’s home in Dolton, Illinois, taking computers and cell phones, according to the court records obtained by the Chicago-Sun Times.

In December 2016, US company ‘Auger’ – a platform for betting using cryptocurrency – reported to the FBI that its employees and investors were being targeted by hackers for their crypto funds.

Cryptocurrencies called Reputation or Ethereum Tokens, used by the Auger platform, were stolen by the hackers, in total estimated to be worth $3.3 million, over $800,000 of which was in Reputation Tokens alone.

The FBI affidavit also includes transcripts of messages sent between the group. One exchange from January 2017 between the Bloomington man and another suspect shows them discussing a successful Auger account hack, with the other suspect writing “LOL, hack the world”.

However, the Bloomington man, who met the hackers through CoD and was threatened with SWATting, told the Chicago-Sun Times he considers himself a victim. 

“I have done nothing but cooperate with Augur and the FBI,” he said, “I have never once profited from anyone [by] crypto-hacking, ever.”

He also disputed the claim that he had helped hack more than 100 victims’ phones, contesting that this figure was an exaggeration.

Call of Duty

NICKMERCS rates the best Warzone players from to Scump to HusKerrs

Published: 24/Oct/2020 1:06

by Theo Salaun


Tasked with drafting a team for a Call of Duty: Warzone tournament, NICKMERCS went through some of the game’s biggest names, ranking them while determining who he would most want to duo with.

To start Davis ‘Hitch’ Edwards’ $10,000 “Cracked Creators” Warzone tournament, 16 creators were tasked with drafting their duo from 16 “cracked” streamers.

As one of the creators allowed to select their tandem, NICKMERCS sifted through 16 of the game’s best to determine who he would prefer to play with.

Ultimately, the FaZe streamer ended up putting his decision to a poll among his fans. But, before doing so, he originally went through all 16 and gave thoughts on how each of them ranks. And the options were varied, but all shared one thing in common: talent.

With professional Call of Duty League players like Matthew ‘FormaL’ Piper and Seth ‘Scump’ Abner available, as well as Warzone streamers like Aydan and HusKerrs, the candidates were excellent. Still, NICKMERCS sifted through and broke down who he truly believes ranks as the battle royale’s best.

Segment begins at 00:20:45.

NICKMERCS starts by going through the list and just expressing what an absolute struggle it will be to pick from such a talented crop of peers: “Oh, it’s going to be so hard to pick man … No matter what, everybody that I would pick from is cracked.” But, after going through and complimenting practically everybody, he starts the process of elimination.

Since Nick chooses second after DrDisrespect, he immediately eliminates Zlaner as Doc’s likely first pick. Then, he eliminates JoeWo with two simple reasons: “I’ve never played with him and every time I play against him, I beat that little ass.”

Then, BobbyPoff is gone: “BobbyPoff, I love the guy, but take him off the list.” And the “Scarf Lord” is followed quickly by the Chicago Huntsmen’s FormaL and Scump: “Love ‘em, love ‘em. But I feel like there’s better BR players.” After that, things start getting complicated.

Cracked Creators Warzone
The list of “cracked” players in Hitch’s Cracked Creators Warzone tournament.

Similar to Zlaner, Nick decides to sacrifice Merk so that he can play with his longtime duo, Maven. Then, recognizing that all of these remaining players are absolute menaces on Verdansk, he goes with two simple metrics to determine his personal preference. He immediately prioritizes controller players and the highest earners in Warzone tournaments.

That eliminates stars like HusKerrs and Symfuhny for their mouse and keyboard usage, while also eliminating Crowder and DougIsRaw for their low earnings. Finally, he eliminates Jukeyz because of his struggles understanding the UK maestro’s accent and decides to put the decision to a poll.


Ultimately, it’s between Aydan and Tommey, with Cloakzy popping on to let NICKMERCS know that Aydan’s been playing some Fortnite recently. That leaves the FaZe star choosing Tommey, noting that “he’s got great communication, phenomenal player, guaranteed to get some chopper kills off rip.”

Despite going through full rankings for his options and landing upon an excellent duo, the decision-making process proved to be futile. NICKMERCS and Tommey could only end in the Top 12 for the tournament, while the easily dismissed BobbyPoff actually came in first place.