A Sony employee could steal $154 million from the company and convert it into bitcoin. But the Japanese authorities, along with the FBI, could get the money back.
FBI recovers stolen $154 million from the bitcoin wallet
Rei Isjii, 32, was able to steal the money from Sony Life Insurance Company, a subsidiary of the Japanese technology company. This was done by falsifying transaction instructions so that the money ended up in an account that he managed.
From there, it was converted to 3879 bitcoin via Coinbase and brought to an offline wallet (cold wallet). The man also sent Sony a letter warning that the company should not file a complaint or the money would disappear forever.
But despite the conversion to cryptocurrencies and offline storage, the FBI managed to get hold of the private key, the password to use the bitcoin address, and transfer the amount to its own account on December 1. Shortly afterwards, the man was arrested in Japan.
In its communication, the FBI clearly states that converting money to crypto is not a solution to hide stolen money. However, it also emphasizes that it has worked closely with the Japanese authorities, Sony and Citybank, for this purpose.