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Former Phone Company Employee Pleads Guilty to Aiding SIM Swap Scam

Levin Law | 11.12.2021
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Affected Customers Incurred Tens of Thousands in Cryptocurrency Losses

A former phone company employee has pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud. The charges stem from a SIM swap scam perpetrated by multiple offenders resulting in significant cryptocurrency losses to dozens of victims. At least nineteen phone company customers were directly affected by the scam.

Levin Law, P.A. continues to represent and investigate cryptocurrency losses related to a phone company’s data breach, security failure, SIM swaps, port-out fraud, or other forms of negligence. If you suffered cryptocurrency losses as a result of a SIM swap scam, port-out fraud, or another scheme, contact Levin Law for a free case evaluation. Call (305) 402-9050 or email managing partner Brian Levin directly at

Conspiracy to Commit Wire Fraud

According to a news release from the Department of Justice, Stephen Daniel Defiore has pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud for his role in a SIM Swap scam that defrauded customers out of thousands of dollars in cryptocurrency. As a result of his plea, he was found in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Sections 371 and 1343.

Defiore worked as a sales representative for the phone company when the alleged fraud occurred. During his tenure, Defiore, who was identified by a co-conspirator, reportedly accepted multiple bribes for his part in the elaborate scheme. 

SIM Card Swap Scam

As an employee of the phone company in question, Defiore had access to customer accounts and was able to switch a SIM card linked to a customer’s phone number to a new phone number. Defiore was accused of doing just that from August 2017 until November 2018. 

As noted in the Factual Basis filed by the DOJ, the former phone company employee received twelve payments totaling $2,325 for assisting co-conspirators in the scam. Defiore accepted nearly $500 per day for performing multiple unauthorized SIM swaps of customers. At least two of the victims identified by the government suffered cryptocurrency losses totaling over $77,000.

Filing Arbitration Claims or Lawsuits for Cryptocurrency Losses

Individuals who have experienced digital currency losses as a result of a phone or cellular company’s data breach or security failure may be entitled to compensation through a cryptocurrency lawsuit or arbitration claim. 

When a company fails to protect a customer’s information or has inadequate systems in place to prevent theft, they may be held liable for damages. Hackers have disproportionately targeted cryptocurrency investors and individuals with large amounts of digital investments. Unfortunately, despite knowing the risk, many companies have failed to provide additional protections for their customers.

Millions Lost in Cryptocurrency Hack

As we previously discussed, cellular provider T-Mobile is currently facing a multi-million dollar lawsuitafter third-party hackers were able to gain unauthorized access to a customer’s account. The access enabled the hackers to bypass the company’s two-factor authentication system resulting in $8.7 million in cryptocurrency being removed from an account.

According to the lawsuit, it was allegedly the company’s gross negligence and reckless disregard which resulted in the customer’s losses. The Federal Trade Commission had previously warned the company about the potential for this form of harm. SIM card swap scams and other efforts to bypass a company’s two-factor authentication process are on the rise across the country.

Contact Levin Law, P.A. for a Free Case Evaluation

Individuals who have lost cryptocurrency assets as a result of a data breach, security failure, SIM swap, port-out fraud, or other wrongdoing are encouraged to contact Levin Law, P.A. for a free case evaluation. Call (305) 402-9050 to discuss your case directly with attorney Brian Levin or email

Most cases are accepted on a contingency fee basis, meaning that clients do not pay Levin Law’s attorney fees unless money is recovered on their behalf. 

About Levin Law

Levin Law is a premier national securities and class action law firm.  Brian Levin, Levin Law’s managing attorney, has obtained settlements and recoveries over $150,000,000 in assets through arbitration and litigation for individual and institutional investors throughout the country and the rest of the world. Levin Law represents cryptocurrency investors, retirees, individual investors, high-net-worth investors, ultra-high-net-worth investors, institutions, family offices, trusts, publicly held companies, and others.

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