Programmer Has $ 240 Million In Bitcoin Locked On A Hard Drive And Only 2 Passwords Left To Access It

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We’ve all had the experience of forgetting a password, but a programmer named Stefan Thomas lost his password on a hard drive containing $ 240 million worth of Bitcoin, and only has two password attempts left. password before being locked forever. by The New York Times (via BBC), Thomas was awarded 7,002 Bitcoins over 10 years ago for making a video on how cryptocurrency works. At the time, his Bitcoin collection was only worth a few dollars each, and he decided to store them in an IronKey digital wallet on a hard drive. He wrote down that reader’s password on a piece of paper that he ended up losing, and now his Bitcoin is worth $ 240 million and he can’t remember what password he wrote all those days ago. years. Thomas has already tried eight possible passwords, and only two more before the password “gets encrypted, making the wallet impossible to access.”

Image Credit: Dan Kitwood / Getty Images

There are those, like former Facebook security chief Alex Stamos, who offered to help Thomas unlock the hard drive, but he’s asking for a 10% cut.
“Um, for $ 220 million in locked Bitcoin you don’t make 10 password guesses but bring it to the pros to buy 20 IronKeys and spend six months finding a secondary channel or uncapping,” Stamos said on Twitter. “I’ll get there for 10%. Call me. Stamos later mentioned that he was joking when he said he would unlock it, but that it is “something that should be investigated.”

Thomas is not the only one to be excluded from his Bitcoin fortune, as there is currently $ 140 billion worth of Bitcoin that is lost or left in inaccessible wallets, according to Chainanalysis, a cryptocurrency data company.The New York Times article even mentions a special case where an entrepreneur lost around 800 Bitcoins when a coworker reformatted a laptop that had the private keys to his wallet.

This whole situation left Thomas wary of cryptocurrency in general.

“The whole idea of ​​being your own bank – let me put it this way, do you make your own shoes? The reason we have banks is that we don’t want to deal with all of these things that banks do, ”Thomas said.

Image Credit: Dan Kitwood / Getty Images.
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Adam Bankhurst is a news editor for IGN. You can follow him on Twitter @AdamBankhurst and on Twitch.



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