Zaryn Dentzel, the co-founder of Tuenti, a Spanish social network turned telecommunications company, was allegedly beaten and robbed of his crypto fortune at his home in Madrid, according to the Spanish news site El Pais.
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Dentzel, an American-born entrepreneur, was apparently in his apartment when the attack occurred. Four to five people in hoods rang the doorbell and flooded into the apartment when Dentzel checked the door.
The attackers apparently covered Dentzel's eyes as well as his home's security cameras. They then beat Dentzel for several hours, leaving a wound on his chest, in order to obtain the password to his Bitcoin fortune which he told police had several tens of millions of euros worth of Bitcoin.
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The official report from the police says that the incident began around 3 pm and that after the long-lasting assault, the group left the home with belongings and the keys to his Bitcoin.
The report states that the police were called by his neighbor who heard loud shouts and calls for help. There have yet to be any arrests made.
Attacks like these are typically known as $5 wrench attacks in crypto communities. This means that if someone is holding Bitcoin with just one layer of security, such as one password, an attacker only needs to get that one piece of information. Therefore, a simple threat of violence with a cheap wrench on the person who holds that piece of information could give them access.
In contrast, someone who has a lot to lose, like millions of dollars of Bitcoin, may have several layers of control. If someone were to attempt to steal the Bitcoin with such an attack the primary owner of the Bitcoin doesn't have immediate access to all pieces of information necessary to access the Bitcoin, rendering a $5 wrench attack fruitless against such systems.
It is currently unclear what type of method Dentzel was using to store his Bitcoin, but given the size of his holdings, it is interesting that this type of attack was successful.