Russian Blogger Beaten and Robbed After Trumpeting Bitcoin Wealth
In a tragic turn of events, a cryptocurrency blogger who is widely seen as an enthusiastic and altruistic source of online information for the global community was attacked in his home and robbed.
The 24-year old Pavel Nyashin, well known as a prolific blogger within the cryptocurrency arena, paid an unexpected price for proclaiming his bitcoin wealth online. The public announcement of his current attractive bitcoin fortunes led to criminals finding his residence and beating and robbing him.
We take cash, goods, and Bitcoin…
Nyashin lost ₽24 million ($411,660) when thugs attacked him in his Leningrad home. Although he had been blogging about his bitcoin wealth in an unassuming manner, the information was not lost on the thieves.
A group of men tracked him down to his house and struck him with a firearm before looting his possessions. Although Nyashin had mentioned the house where he kept his takings, according to domestic site ForkLog, the criminals clearly had to do some investigation in order to pinpoint and target him.
Police are investigating a case of assault and robbery after the incident. Nyashin has been hospitalized with minor injuries. He claims to be able to remember the face of at least one of the attackers, who was unmasked, while the others all appeared to be wearing New Year’s masks. They struck him on the head with a pistol and tied up a neighbor in the building, before making off with his safe, trading computer and assorted documents.
Cryptocurrency no protection against thuggery
Seen as an aid by thousands in the bitcoin era, Nyashin produced YouTube videos in which he methodically explained how to trade bitcoin on exchanges for everyone’s benefit, on his channel Kryptach.
Bizarrely, the thieves also vandalized all of the home appliances and other computers before making off in a Mercedes parked outside. He had received a phone call prior to the attack from an unknown person, asking about cryptocurrency trading.
The robbers could well have been confirming his home address via his phone number. Nyashin had shown brief footage of his home in an online video. He said that while he suspected the caller could have been among the robbers, he couldn’t be sure. Unfortunately, Nyashin’s foray into social media and subsequent misfortune is not the first of its kind involving virtual currencies.
Close to home, an EXMO analyst and cryptocurrency investor, Pavel Lerner was abducted by men with guns who had been waiting outside his office in Kiev. Lerner was eventually released December 29, 2017, after a $1 million ransom was paid in bitcoin.
Incidents involving ransom demands on the back of the tight anonymity of blockchain-secured cryptocurrencies are rising globally. The loot scooped by the WannaCry ransom hack that occurred during 2017 is also slowly being moved via a Swiss exchange known as ShapeShift. Interestingly, the hackers are converting to Monero, widely heralded as the most private cryptocurrency available.
Nyashin has yet to ascertain whether the robbers have accessed his blog or his cryptocurrency wallet. It remains unclear whether documents taken by the robbers contain information that will enable them to access Nyashin’s bitcoin store.