We’ve all heard about cryptocurrencies, like Bitcoin, and how the value of them has been fluctuating, leading to some pretty wealthy individuals walking around out there. Bitcoin accounts are secured, as is practically everything, by a user-defined password. Lose it, and you lose access to whatever it protected.
Today, I read the story of Stefan Thomas, who tells the New York Times that he’s accumulated 7,002 Bitcoins, which at today’s current price of $36,664.59 is valued at $257 million. The problem is, he’s forgotten the password to his account, and only has 2 more attempts to remember it. If he screws both of them up, he loses every penny of it.
The article goes on to say that this is a fairly common problem, with people losing their passwords and being unable to access their money. Or worse, using weak passwords that are easy for hackers to figure out and losing their money that way. One such hacker has made off with $54 million. It’s created a whole industry for cybersecurity experts that can help these now-wealthy individuals get back at their money, which must cost a pretty penny.
All of that could have been avoided if Stefan and the other people used a password manager, like LastPass or 1Password. They can generate secure passwords and store them, as well as user ID’s and any other information they might need to access their account. They’re inexpensive (particularly to someone with $257 million), reliable, and secure. If that’s too hard, maybe they could write the password in the margin of a book, or keep it in a note in Evernote (keeping it separate from the user ID and any other information they would need to sign in).
Anyway, Stefan and any other Bitcoin millionaire who’s forgotten the password to their wallet: Go stand in the corner, and see if you can remember your password.