“The Memory Smuggler” sounds like something an AI trained on award-winning literary fantasy novels would come up with, but it’s actually this man, who tried to mule 420 (!) sticks of M.2. SSD storage, strapped to his waist, into China from Macao. The chips were valued at $32,984.94 (about $80 each) by authorities, but the total in terabytes wasn’t announced.
Normally, traffickers try to smuggle high-value goods, such as processors or graphics cards. A recent attempt to conceal 70 graphics cards among 617 pounds of live lobster comes to mind. On the contrary, this SSD smuggler opted to sneak in lower-value hardware instead. It isn’t the first time we’ve seen M.2 SSDs transported into China. A recent bust from this year detained a man that hid 84 SSDs inside his scooter. M.2 SSDs still contain metallic parts, so it’s close to impossible to get past metal detectors without raising the alarm with the metal detectors.
Instead of hiding the SSDs inside a package, the perpetrator opted to tape the drives around his body for a bigger haul. The seized bounty amounted to 420 M.2 drives, equal to a combined value of approximately $32,984.94. At $78.53 a piece, the offender could be smuggling 1TB or 2TB PCIe 4.0 drives.
I’m going to be thinking all day now about the potential for a Wachowski remake of Johnny Mnemonic set in the Pearl River Delta.