Alabama Man Charged Over SIM Swap Hacks That Stole $150K in Crypto

Joseph Chase Oaks allegedly used SIM-swap hacks to access victim's online accounts between August 2018 and October 2019.

AccessTimeIconFeb 11, 2021 at 3:31 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 12:10 p.m. UTC
10 Years of Decentralizing the Future
May 29-31, 2024 - Austin, TexasThe biggest and most established global event for everything crypto, blockchain and Web3.Register Now

A man from Alabama who targeted Manhattan (N.Y.) residents to steal more than $150,000 in cryptocurrency via a SIM-swapping scheme faces a string of charges, the New York Daily News reported Thursday.

  • Joseph Chase Oaks, 22, of Millbrook, Ala., face charges of grand larceny, identity theft and computer trespass, among other charges.
  • Oaks allegedly operated a scam where he accessed 50 online accounts to steal the cryptocurrency between August 2018 and October 2019.
  • By transferring the cell phone numbers of over 300 people to other phones in his possession, Oaks allegedly bypassed two-factor authentication measures to access the online accounts.
  • Prosecutors said the accused worked alongside others in the U.S. and Canada to access over 60 smartphones and hundreds of SIM cards.
  • Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance said in a statement that it's clear SIM-swapping "has only grown more common and prolific" since the first prosecution by New York authorities two years ago.


Please note that our privacy policy, terms of use, cookies, and do not sell my personal information has been updated.

CoinDesk is an award-winning media outlet that covers the cryptocurrency industry. Its journalists abide by a strict set of editorial policies. In November 2023, CoinDesk was acquired by the Bullish group, owner of Bullish, a regulated, digital assets exchange. The Bullish group is majority-owned by; both companies have interests in a variety of blockchain and digital asset businesses and significant holdings of digital assets, including bitcoin. CoinDesk operates as an independent subsidiary with an editorial committee to protect journalistic independence. CoinDesk employees, including journalists, may receive options in the Bullish group as part of their compensation.

Learn more about Consensus 2024, CoinDesk's longest-running and most influential event that brings together all sides of crypto, blockchain and Web3. Head to to register and buy your pass now.