Bitcoin may feel like it exploded overnight,
but for early backers of the cryptocurrency
this wasn’t exactly so—especially for those
individuals who may have sold too early or
even lost their stake completely.
Let’s take a look at some of the poor souls
who lost millions in Bitcoin, either entirely
by accident or out of impatience.
Today’s video was done in collaboration with
Crypto Coin Consultants.
Stay tuned to see more!
Imagine the feeling of losing $150 million
in a single day!
That’s exactly what happened to IT worker
The icing on the cake is that he knows exactly
where his 7,500 bitcoins are, but city council
won’t allow him to search for them, since
it’s technically against the law to go scavenging
through the local landfill.
Howells began mining for bitcoin way before
it blew up in 2009, and by 2013, he stopped
mining and the laptop he used was broken into
parts, then sold on eBay for some quick cash.
He kept his laptop’s hard drive hoping to
one day make some money off of bitcoin.
But while cleaning his home, he accidentally
put it into a waste basket at the local landfill
in South Wales, where it was ultimately buried.
This means that when Bitcoin was at its peak
of nearly $20,000, he basically threw away
$150 million worth Bitcoin.
The council won’t allow Howells to try to
retrieve his hard drive since it’s been four
years, and they deem it too risky to attempt
to unearth it.
In addition, it would be extremely costly,
and even if the drive was actually found,
the risk of toxic waste surrounding it would
have been too great.
NFL star Darren McFadden lost out on a multi-million
dollar Bitcoin fortune through a fraudulent
investment of his ex-business manager.
McFadden retired from the NFL after 10 seasons
at just 30 years old and ended up suing Michael
Vick; not the NFL quarterback (but rather,
his former business manager) for a sum of
He said his money was mishandled throughout
his career, and he even lost out on a $3 million
bitcoin-related business venture due to Vick’s
That $3 million would have been worth WELL
over $200 million at its peak in December
His money manager even used McFadden’s cash
to subsidize his own lifestyle and expenses,
while also investing in his own future projects
without McFadden’s consent.
McFadden said Vick was an “old family friend”
whom, he trusted from the get-go with his
finances, but unfortunately, he was young
and naïve, and the man took advantage of
him and robbed him of millions of dollars
throughout his career.
Gizmodo Australia editor of technology Campbell
Simpson said he unknowingly threw out a portable
hard drive seven years ago which today would
have held $4.8 million worth of bitcoin.
The writer says he ended up missing out on
incredible riches after his $25 worth of bitcoin
ended up skyrocketing in price.
Unfortunately, he tossed out the hard drive
too soon without considering how it could
one day turn into something worthwhile.
Simpson said he had no idea Bitcoin would
be worth so much, since it was difficult to
find a place to use the cryptocurrency when
he purchased it.
He used his hard drive to store pirated music
and movies as well as a portfolio for his
Upon moving homes, he ended up throwing throwing
the hard drive away.
On the bright side, he’s shown a positive
attitude towards his mistake and took it as
a learning lesson, saying he’s happy with
his life right now and that he won’t try to
retrieve the lost Bitcoin.
The Anonymous Redditor’s Cautionary Tale
There’s a popular Reddit post circulating
the internet that goes something like this:
an anonymous user had been margin trading
for around a year and ended up turning 3 Bitcoin
into 200 Bitcoin, which would have been around
$4 million dollars during its peak.
He got greedy and so, instead of closing and
being happy with his 300 Bitcoin, he kept
trying to increase the size of his holdings
until the entire thing was almost diminished,
being worth only $12,000.
He tried trading it back up, but kept losing
until his holdings were at zero.
Another big name in the cryptocurrency world
is Mark Karpeles, who was the former head
of the world’s biggest bitcoin exchange.
He almost made out with $859 million of his
customers’ funds, but Japanese police arrested
him in connection with the loss of one million
bitcoins from the Mt. Gox exchange.
That meant Mark Karpeles lost bitcoins that
would have been worth $387 million dollars
at the time, and were considered the world’s
most valuable cryptocurrency.
Japanese authorities managed to recover about
200,000 lost bitcoins and they were set aside
to settle claims with former Mt. Gox customers.
But bankruptcy court filings suggested the
25,000 Mt. Gox creditors who filed claims
would have to receive the recovered bitcoins
in Yen and at the 2014 bitcoin price, which—as
we all know—was definitely not the highest
Karpeles will basically make out with a large
majority of the recovered Bitcoin.
One person by the name of Paul Wasensteiner
said claims are limited to a maximum of $480,
meaning Karpeles will make even more money
from his robbery than initially thought.
Many of his former employees disagree with
the way he was running Mt. Gox, saying he
was a maverick of sorts, but also had the
ego of someone who wanted to prove themselves.
Members of the bitcoin community were especially
critical of Karpeles.
Some went as far as to call him a “disgrace,”
including Gavin Andresen, chief scientist
of the Bitcoin Foundation.
Karpeles and Andresen were on the board of
the Bitcoin Foundation together.
But after the Mt. Gox scandal, Karpeles was
forced to resign.
Coincheck is one of the biggest cryptocurrency
exchanges to date, but as we know much of
the cryptocurrency world is at risk for cyber
Coincheck Inc. was one such cybersecurity
It was also one of the largest heists in history
in regards to digital tokens.
It wasn’t Bitcoin that was stolen, but rather,
an obscure coin called NEM that was taken.
This hack raises questions around the world
on how to protect and keep cryptocurrencies
safe once they’ve been purchased.
The Coincheck exchange had to halt sales and
currency withdrawals, and even ended up restricting
dealings with most other cryptocurrencies.
Coincheck President Koichiro Wada apologized
to customers, saying the company may have
to seek financial assistance.
This news was a large blow, considering the
fact that Coincheck had become one of Asia’s
leading Bitcoin and cryptocurrency exchanges.
What was discovered behind the Coincheck hack
was it was an inside job.
The company said there was a potential security
lapse, allowing the thief to seize a large
sum of customers’ assets that were stored
in what’s known as a hot wallet; a wallet
whose coins are connected to external networks.
Most exchanges keep their funds in cold wallets,
meaning they aren’t connected to the outside
world & are less vulnerable to hacks and cyber
Coincheck also lacked multi-signature security,
which requires multiple sign-offs before funds
can be moved.
The value of funds stolen reached around $500