In Search of Space Prosecutors


ARS Technica recently reported on the theft of significant amount of virtual currency from an online bank. The theft was carried out by the former CEO of the bank and the virtual currency was eventually sold for the very real amount of $5,000.

Some background is helpful. The game involved, Eve Online, is a massively multiplayer game where the player pilots a spaceship in a massive universe. The game distinguishes itself in part by the sheer amount of shenanigans permitted by the game design and the terms of service. Players may cheat, lie, steal, murder, and generally make themselves a menace to civilized space society. The most complex and lucrative heists, such as corporate and bank heists, can require coordination between dozens of players over the course of years. Occasionally, stolen items or goods can amount to serious real money. The TOS attempts to prevent people from cashing in on their ill-gotten gains outside of the game by prohibiting the sale of in game items/currency for real currency.

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