ALTAMONTE SPRINGS, Fla. – It was the zero dollar balance in his account that first alerted Vincent Berggren something was off.
“I just thought it was a glitch or something,” Berggren said.
But, it wasn’t a glitch. This was his reality. Berggren and his girlfriend, Zoe Westervelt, say they had $24,000 stolen from them, hacked out of their Coinbase account.
“We’re very good people, and we work hard for our money. We’ve both been working since we were able to be in the workforce and it just sucks that our money can be taken away from us like that.”
Coinbase is a cryptocurrency app that stores digital money. The couple had a password and two-step authentication, but, apparently, it wasn’t enough to protect them from hackers.
Now, Altamonte Springs police and Coinbase have told them there’s not much they can do.
Coinbase sent FOX 35 a statement saying it takes extensive security measures to ensure customer accounts remain as safe as possible, but, ultimately, in many cases, they do not cover “any losses resulting from unauthorized access to Coinbase accounts due to a compromise of a customer’s login credentials.”
“You’re storing it with those organizations with the hopes that they’re going to protect it as well and, unfortunately, we’re seeing that hasn’t been the case,” said KnowBe4 security awareness advocate James McQuiggan.
McQuiggan recommends using an authenticator app for extra protection or buying a security key that requires your fingerprint to access accounts.
“This is kind of what it looks like. It looks like a little USB device you can plug into your computer.”
He also recommends changing your passwords frequently.
Vincent Berggren says he’d been receiving texts for a few days before the hack and ignored them. Now, he realizes he shouldn’t have.
“I was like, ‘Oh, this is a glitch. This is just weird. Why is it sending me codes?'”
The couple says, at this point, they’ve accepted the $24,000 loss.