UK Thieves Burgle Bitcoin Center, Find Zilch

A bold maneuver in the dark nets a group of wannabe crypto thieves in Birmingham, U.K., very little.

Jul 19, 2019 at 12:30 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 13, 2021 at 11:12 a.m. UTC

In a daring, if baffling, evening raid thieves allegedly broke into the so-called Bitcoin Embassy on Formans Road in the U.K. city of Birmingham. The thieves attacked at 10pm on July 15, according to the Birmingham Mail.

Recorded and posted to Facebook, the daring late-evening attack netted the thieves what looked like, at first, either lengths of receipt tape from a bitcoin ATM - an ATM owned by the decidedly unappetizing Shitcoins Club - or, less likely, an decidedly pessimistic length of toilet paper.

The truth, however, is more mundane. Adam Gramowski, CEO of Shitcoins.club, said that the ATM in Birmingham was a smaller model and that they had run it since September, 2018. He said that the thieves were planning to use a cable to pull the ATM from its moorings and out into the street.

"It is a two-way machine capable of conducting sales and purchases of four different cryptos: BTC, ETH, LTC and DASH. We sell cryptos for GBP and EUR," he said. "I can confirm that our Birmingham self-service shop was broken into on July 15. However, the robbers were spotted by our CCTV operator in time and were unable to penetrate our countermeasures. The ATM was not damaged, it will be up and running in no time. Damages to the shop are minimal. Also, the line or rope seen behind the car has nothing to do with the ATM. We do not store Cryptos on the ATM’s hard drive or provide cold storage facilities for our customers. That line was brought by the robbers to facilitate the robbery."

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Birmingham welcomed the first bitcoin ATM in the city in 2017, crowing that "Birmingham gets first Bitcoin ATM - the internet currency used by criminals on 'dark web'." The paper then connected the installation of the ATM with the NHS ransomware attack that brought the organization to its knees that same year.

Outreach to the "embassy" proved unfruitful and Gramowski said that the ATM was unsupervised.

Image via Google Maps


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