Dutch police seize NFT's for the first time ever
Police cybercrime investigators in Oost-Nederland seized cryptocurrency and non-fungible tokens as part of its investigation into the widespread trade in private data. It marks the first time that a Dutch investigative service seized NFTs, the police said in a statement.
That case, announced earlier this month, led to the arrests of a 23-year-old man from Weesp and a 19-year-old man from Hilversum, both of whom were arrested in their homes about two weeks ago.
NFTs are unique, unable to be replicated, and are often used as a digital asset representing ownership rights over a real-world asset. They can denote a form of ownership over physical property, but are often used for intellectual property, such as digital art, items in video games, images from movies, or pieces of music.
"A non-fungible token (NFT) is an individual, unique, digital record on a blockchain. NFTs are particularly popular as 'digital art', the most famous of which are images of monkeys, cats or punks. These pictures are unique and, in some cases, worth millions of euros," police said.
"Because NFTs represent value, they can be taken as the proceeds from criminal offenses, as normally happens with expensive cars or large sums of cash, as an example," the police explained.
The two people arrested in the case were identified through messages in a chat service. Police said the private data at the center of the investigation is often used in cyber scams, like bank helpdesk cons, friend-in-need schemes, identity fraud, and even stalking.