- Andrew Schober was a victim of a malware attack in 2018 that saw his 16 Bitcoins stolen.
- Following a forensic investigation, he has filed a lawsuit against the parents of the suspected young thieves.
In 2018, a man identified as Andrew Schober became a victim of a malicious program called Electrum Atom that infected his computer and stole 16.4 Bitcoins. Since the incident, Schober had been tirelessly working to track down the perpetrators through different means including spending more than $10,000 on hiring experts to trace the crypto transaction.
His investigation led to the discovery of two men studying computer sciences in UK Universities as the brains behind the attack. They were both minors at the time of the crime. Schober then wrote letters to the families of the two suspected thieves, hoping they could convince the young men to return the money. However, there was a continued silence from their parents.
It seems your son has been using malware to steal money from people online. Losing that money has been financially and emotionally devastating. He might have thought he was playing a harmless joke, but it has had serious consequences for my life.
The development has forced Schober to file a lawsuit against the kids and their parents in a Colorado court.
The argument concerning the statute of limitations
According to the latest development, one of the defendants Hazel D. Wells has filed a motion with the court, and she seeks to represent herself and her son in lieu of hiring an attorney. According to the families of the two young men, Schober has run out of time to claim a cause of action against them.
Plaintiff alleges two common law causes of action (conversion and trespass to chattel), for which a three-year statute of limitations applies Plaintiff further alleges a federal statutory cause of action, for which a two-year statute of limitations applies. Because the plaintiff did not file his lawsuit until May 21, 2021, three years and five months after his injury, his claims should be dismissed.
However, Schober’s attorney opposes that argument, claiming the statute of limitations does not run out until the plaintiff knows or has reasons to know of both the existence or cause of his injury according to reports.
Mark Rasch, a former prosecutor with the US Justice Department explained that the plaintiff’s reason for dragging the parents into the suit is because they were notified of a crime committed by their kids, but failed to respond.
How Schober’s Bitcoins were stolen
According to forensic investigation on the computer, Schober had his computer infected after clicking on a link posted on Reddit for a crypto wallet app called Electrum Atom. This ended up downloading malicious software on his computer without his notice. The malware was designed to wait for the user to copy a crypto wallet address to the temporary clipboard of his computer. When he tried to move 16.4 Bitcoins from his account to another, the malware changed his payment wallet address with a different address controlled by the two young men.
Just an hour after his Bitcoins were stolen, he found one of the defendants who had posted on Github asking for assistance to access private keys that related to a public key of the Bitcoin address used by the clipboard stealing malware.
Rasch disclosed that many juveniles have been accused of stealing and laundering millions of dollars.
A lot of these crimes are being committed by juveniles, and we don’t have a good juvenile justice system that’s well designed to both civilly and criminally go after kids.
According to him, it makes sense that people spend so much to track down their stolen assets, however, there is no guarantee that their investment will pay off.