In a recent Roll Call podcast, Stefan Thomas, founder of monetized web content startup Coil, recalls how he managed to lose access to his Bitcoin wallets, now worth over $400,000,000, back in July of 2011 when BTC was trading around $30.
“I actually made two backups, I had a main copy and then two backup copies and through a string of – you can call it negligence or you can call it bad luck – but I lost access to all three of them, and so that’s how it all happened.”
“Once I lost the coins I was panicked, I was desperate, I was trying everything conceivable to recover it. I felt terrible and obviously, as a Bitcoin expert, I had advised companies on how they should secure their Bitcoin. It was just so bad and terrible that I had made this mistake and so it was a very difficult couple of weeks…”
The software developer says that his big lesson was to always “test your backups” for your wallets and double-check that they actually work.
“I had two backups so I was feeling pretty confident that nothing could happen and when I lost access to the main copy, I realized that none of the backups were actually working and were actually accessible to me, and I could’ve noticed that if I had been testing those backups like once a month for example. I would’ve noticed I lost access to the main copy and it would’ve been fine.”
Now, Thomas is partnering with the California-based fast-food chain Chipotle to launch a game called “Burritos or Bitcoin” where customers can participate in a crypto-rescue mission. They’ll have 10 attempts to guess a six-digit code for the chance to win up to $25,000 worth of BTC.
The first prize of $25,000 in BTC will be awarded to three lucky winners. The second price of $500 in BTC will be awarded to 50 winners, and 10,000 participants will win one free burrito. Chipotle’s chief marketing officer Chris Brandt says that the contest is a unique way to celebrate what he thinks are two very valuable assets.
“We’re always looking for unique ways to enhance the celebration, and this year, we’re giving fans the opportunity to acquire two highly valuable assets: Burritos or Bitcoin.”
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