We have all seen the horrendous reports of major bitcoin thefts, and they seem to continue occuring despite efforts to prevent them. The fundamental problem is a simple one: bitcoins are stored in wallets. The security of the wallet is architecturally the same, whether you store 0,01 bitcoins or 1 million bitcoins. However, 99% of all major Bitcoin thefts can easily be prevented by introducing a relatively minor architectural improvement, namely the introduction of the bitcoin ACCOUNT. The only two differences between a wallet and an account is that 1) the account has an additional secret superkey which can be used to override the ordinary secret key (think PIN versus PUK on mobiles), and 2) the transaction is delayed by e.g. 24 hours before executed. 24 hours is typically more than long enough to discover that a heist is in progress, and one can then use the secret superkey (which is stored offline or in another secret location) to cancel the transactions before the 24 hours are up, thereby preventing the heist. For most purposes 24 hours is enough to prevent the majority of thefts. However, the superkey could be used to set an even longer execution delay for increased security. Most of the tools for doing this is already in place. I am no software expert and I leave it to them to work out the details, but as far as I can tell only minor changes to the bitcoin architecture are needed to implement the account, and this would virtually eliminate theft. Wallets would then only be used for pocket change that people can afford to lose, as they should be.
Has anybody ever been prosecuted for a crypto-currency crime?
We've seen a lot of major Bitcoin thefts, has anyone been caught? Is anybody even investigating these thefts? As in, is it even illegal? Would be interesting to see what the actual charges were and the legislation behind this. After all, it is possible in some extreme cases to steal a private key without hacking a system, e.g. when you use the same address many times What do you think?
It's beginning to feel a lot like 2017. Some useful reminders and advice for new comers.
Hype and increasing prices will undoubtedly attract new investors, HODLers, and gamblers. Regardless of how long you've been in crypto, below are a few pieces of information (or reminders) you should consider.
We're still early. Cryptocurrency, including bitcoin, is still in its infancy. Because of this, we will continue to see headlines of hacks, exchange closures, big name investors coming into the space, major institutional adoption, and everything in between. Until crypto is regulated (for better or worse) and even after, there will be bad actors attempting to steal your cryptocurrencies. To that end, think twice when hearing about 'deals' or investments that seem too good to be true. They probably are.
Protection. I often see questions regarding the storage of cryptocurrencies. Not to oversimplify, but as a user, you have ~3 choices to store your cryptocurrency. In order of most secure to least secure:
Cold Storage - From wikipedia: Cold storage refers to storing Bitcoins/Cryptos offline and spending without the private keys controlling them ever being online. This resists theft by hackers and malware, and is often a necessary security precaution especially dealing with large amounts of Bitcoin. If you aren't comfortable manually storing your private key, physical hardware wallets are your best alternative. When possible, buy direct from the manufacturer to avoid any tampering to your new device.
Hot Wallets - From investopedia: The difference between a hot wallet and a cold wallet is that hot wallets are connected to the internet, while cold wallets are not. Hot wallets can be installed onto your mobile device and/or your web browser. Similar to cold storage, these hot wallets will 'store' your crypto and will be accessed to send/receive tokens, execute smart contracts, and conduct other transactions. There are many options to choose from, but MetaMask is as close to an industry standard as it comes, and the developer has recently implemented an ERC-20 token swap function. Again, download directly from the developer if you can.
Exchanges - Exchanges certainly have their own purpose, most notably as an on and off ramp for your fiat currency (e.g., US Dollar, etc). However, when you read headlines like "Bitcoin Hacked for 10 million dollars!" what they usually mean is, a centralized exchange that holds users' cryptocurrencies was hacked and bitcoin was extracted from the exchange's storage. For this reason, exchanges are considered to be less safe than your Hot Wallet and Cold storage alternatives.
Don't be greedy. This is easier said than done, and many veteran traders have learned this the hard way -- some still haven't learned. When prices are only going up, you're going to feel like a million bucks. But things dont go up forever. Ever. (Unless it's the Fed's balance sheet.. har har). Point being, it's okay to take profits along the way up. I guarantee you'll have an opportunity to re-buy those same tokens at a cheaper price, and you'll enjoy them even more the second time around.
Don't spend more than you can afford. Hopefully this goes without saying, but the crypto space is extremely volatile. It is not uncommon to lose your entire investment with just one wrong token/ICO/scam. To that end; just use your common sense. It sounds easy, but when you're making money, sometimes it's hard to see the cliff at the end of the road.
Keep learning. I joined the crypto space because I saw an opportunity to make money. It's been a wild ride, and I've learned a lot more than I've gained (from a monetary perspective). What i didn't expect to happen, was to open pandora's box when it comes to what Bitcoin (specifically) aimed to solve. My thirst for knowledge only expanded when I learned of the opportunity space Ethereum was trying to fill. Compound that with the immutability of blockchain technology, DeFi, smart contracts, data oracles, (and the list goes on); now I'm completely hooked. It's clear to me that blockchain will revolutionize the way we function on the global scale. But many are just now beginning to learn about bBitcoin, and we're ahead of the curve. Which leads me back to point number 1; we're still early.
Sorry for rambling on here; I'm sure more veteran HODLers have already X'd out of this post, which is fine. They likely don't need this information as they have learned these same tips along their own journeys. But for newcomers to the space, I wish I had this foundational knowledge from the get go. Don't be afraid to ask questions on this sub. With the recent implementation of MOON tokens (this is a whole 'nother topic), I've personally noticed more downvotes than normal. But awareness and understanding is critical to adoption, so don't be turned off if you don't get an answer to your questions immediately. There is a wealth of knowledge scattered across the internet, and still a lot of smart people on reddit who are willing to help.
List of Major Bitcoin Heists, Thefts, and Losses. From BitcoinWiki. This is the approved revision of this page, as well as being the most recent. Jump to: navigation, search. Enjoyed the article? Share: In this article there is a list of biggest Bitcoin heists, frauds and thefts. There were many Bitcoin hacks and losses of thousands of Bitcoins by people. As usual, such events are reported by ... And by major, I mean hundreds of thousands if not hundreds of millions of dollars worth of Bitcoin getting snatched. Think of this as the six best reasons to not invest your life savings in Bitcoin. For disputed thefts, I have applied best judgement and included the ones that were most publicly accepted. Because of the volatile nature of Bitcoin's exchange price, I have denominated heist estimates in BTC. Although not heists per se, major permanent bitcoin-denominated losses are also included in this list. If I missed any major thefts ... The bitcoin price has been known to swing wildly following reports of major bitcoin thefts, ... The bitcoin price has been hit by bitcoin exchange hacks and thefts in the past. Coindesk. Meanwhile ... With eight major bitcoin exchanges reportedly holding more than 1.925 million BTC (about $14 billion), crypto investor and entrepreneur, Trace Mayer, highlights the dangers of such massive hoards. Cause for Crypto Concern. Tweeting on Monday (December 2, 2019), Mayer reasoned that these massive BTC holdings in Bitcoin exchange wallets were a danger to the industry. According to Mayer, these ...
Credit card thieves can use a skimming device to swipe data through the cards' magnetic strips. Two Jacksonville students are facing up to two decades behind bars after pleading guilty to stealing $4 million worth of bitcoin.The pair hacked darknet site... 👇Business Inquiries [email protected] 👉While Bitcoin (BTC) has never been hacked. Bitcoin (BTC) Addresses however, get stolen all the time. A BTC... Trading in bitcoin futures opens today on Cboe Global Markets Inc.Its rival, CME Group Inc.,will soon follow suit.It’s a milestone in the acceptance of the d... These are the top 10 unsolved heists in history, ranked by the value of the goods stolen, adjusted for inflation to 2014 US dollars. Subscribe to TDC: https:...