FBI agent gains secret nuclear information, transfers crypto in return


The crypto world is considered secure because of no controlling centralized entity. But data leaking in the system is pretty common as it became a tool for the FBI.

In West Virginia, the police arrested a nuclear engineer and his wife on the grounds of treachery and selling of classified information.

The duo supplied secret information about the blueprints of nuclear-powered warships to a person they thought to belong to a foreign nation for about one year. The client was, however, an FBI agent who made crypto payments in return for the data.

On Saturday, both the FBI and the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) arrested Jonathan, the nuclear engineer, and Diana Toebbe, his wife. On Tuesday, October 12, they will be before the Federal Court.

Jonathan Toebbe has been working as a Nuclear Engineer in the Naval Nuclear Propulsion Program and has an active U.S. Defense Department national security clearance.

How data reached to FBI agent

In early 2020, after finding out that he sent sampling files and instructions on the process of conducting secret communications for buying more data, the FBI got suspicious about Toebbe.

After getting some sample information in June 2021, the undercover agent sent $10,000 to Toebbe, but in the form of unknown cryptocurrency as payment. The couple passed the information using the peanut butter sandwich as the “dead drop” method to hide the S.D. card containing the remaining data. The agent, in return, paid $20,000 in cryptocurrencies form.

The second drop of information brought $70,000 worth of cryptocurrencies to the couple. However, they got caught by the FBI while planning their third drop.

Crypto can be a way to track crime

The event is not the first instance that U.S. federal agents have utilized cryptocurrencies to target and investigate crime. The U.S. State has started offering compensation through its “Rewards for Justice” websites in August. Under this, it offers compensation in the crypto form in exchange for data aiming to catch foreign terrorism activities.

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