back to article MtGox finds 200,000 Bitcoin in old wallets

Failed Bitcoin exchange MtGox has revealed a further, but fortuitous failure. In a newly-released (PDF) statement, the outfit says it “... had certain old format wallets which were used in the past and which, MtGox thought, no longer held any bitcoins.” Once it prised open one of those wallets it was found to hold 200,000 …


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  1. jake Silver badge

    ::shakes head::

    The mind absolutely boggles that anyone bought into this.

    Remember, kiddies, if it sounds too good to be true ... it is.

    1. d3rrial

      Re: ::shakes head::

      What was too good to be true at Mt.Gox? Everyone with their nose open could smell the shit from miles away...

      1. Ben Rosenthal

        Re: ::shakes head::

        I think he's under the impression that Gox is bitcoin and bitcoin is gox.

        Anyone keeping coin on Gox for any longer than it took to make a transaction was doing it wrong, anyone storing large amounts of BTC with ANY third party is doing it wrong.

        1. Rick Brasche

          Re: ::shakes head::

          the dirty "secret" is that it's almost true.

          whomever has the most bitcoins under their control, IS essentially bitcoin. Unlike the USD that takes the entire weight of a nation like China or a hundred billionaires to manipulate a few percentage points (not counting the US politicians who can do so as part of their jobs), one or two controlling agents can bomb or build BC's value. And are doing so. It's a lot easier to herd cats than millionaires, but either way, herding one or two is a lot easier than a hundred or more

    2. Titus Technophobe
      Thumb Up

      Re: ::shakes head:: @Jake

      Yes ... I have to agree Jake. I have followed the bitcoin stories partly as this may be a way to make a pile of money to achieve a better lifestyle (*1), and mainly out of morbid curiosity.

      From a purely theoretical viewpoint be it either 'Tulip Mania', 'South Sea Bubble', a FIAT currency for criminals or just a Ponzi get rich quick scheme for the early adopters, the writing does seem to be on the walls for bitcoin.

      (*1) ... the lifestyle that Jake has alluded to in some of his posts lol

      1. James Micallef Silver badge

        Re: ::shakes head:: @Jake

        "be it either 'Tulip Mania', 'South Sea Bubble', a FIAT currency for criminals or just a Ponzi get rich quick scheme"

        I doubt that compact Italian cars with a reputation for unreliability would be a good choice as a means of exchange.

        1. Titus Technophobe

          Re: ::shakes head:: @Ben

          Ah yes .. the same Ben who responded to my comment on the 'silence of the bitcoin evangelists' with a quip about banks getting robbed and or losing money.

          That Ben who didn't respond when it was pointed out that people depositing money in the corrupt old banks stood a good chance of getting the money back. Not sure where you live Ben so this may not apply, but even in country without government backed depositor grantees I think the local bank might be safer than either Mt. Gox, or indeed a virtual bitcoin wallet.

          1. Ben Rosenthal

            Re: ::shakes head:: @Ben

            It's not my job to educate you, if you are genuinely interesting in why you are wrong then do the research.

            Like I say earlier, Gox was not a bank, I'm not sure what you think your point is.

            You also seem quite upset that I didn't reply to a post you made, it's nothing personal I only generally come on here once or twice a day. Sorry if I left you madly pressing f5 awaiting my return.

            1. Titus Technophobe

              Re: ::shakes head:: @Ben & Mark

              @Ben : No I observed that you couldn't produce an argument when another poster suggested that a bank might be a safer place for your life savings,,, It seems you still can't?

              @Mark : The "Pump and Dump Strawman" ... nuff said I think :).

        2. Titus Technophobe
          Thumb Up

          Re: ::shakes head:: @James

          Yes ... as a garage mechanic said on one occasion "You would be daft to own a DAF (*1), and FIAT stands for First In All Trouble''. The DAF bit isn't totally relevant but I do feel for the sake of journalistic integrity I should give the full quote.

          (*1) Cars produced by the DAF truck company which because of the Variomatic gear box had the useful (?) feature of going as fast in reverse as forward. Eventually evolved into the Volvo 343 ... chancing my arm a bit Volvo, being well Volvo, would have a put a limiter on the reverse velocity.

      2. Mark .

        Re: ::shakes head:: @Jake

        Except Bitcoin is alive and well, so if the "too good to be true" refers to that, those people are still doing fine, with Bitcoin values still 900% up from a year ago - a time when people like you were already claiming that that was the top of a bubble.

        The problem at Mt Gox was "storing large amounts of Bitcoin in an online wallet, especially on an exchange where for months they've had troubles like not allowing withdrawals of USD", and as d3rrial points out, most people - including Bitcoin users - were aware of the problems for ages.

  2. Gordon Pryra

    Found in old wallets?

    More likely someone was told "when I turn the lights back on, there better be a slice of the cake on the table"

  3. No, I will not fix your computer

    Or perhaps, when there's blood on the streets....

    Hide 200,000 bitcoins in the old wallet format, and if no-one notices after the dust settles it can "disappear" again.

  4. Ole Juul


    I know lots of people who have files all over the place on their computer and can never find anything. Fortunately they're not bankers.

  5. John Diffenthal

    "It's surely also bad news inasmuch as it shows the outfit was not very organised. "

    I think we had got that point already ...

    1. Charles Manning

      "the outfit was not very organised. "

      Or maybe they were far more organised and the shambles is just a front.....

      Seems to me it would be entirely possible to "lose" a whole lot of bitcoin to a hole in the transaction protocol, declare bankruptcy, then go live off the "lost" BC.

      Even at $10, 200k bitcoin can be a huge temptation and bitcoin is surely the easiest "currency" to pull a fast-one with.

  6. Ian Bremner

    So they're basically doing the IT equivalent of searching for loose change down the back of the sofa?

    1. goldcd


      If by the action of losing it in the first place, you'd managed to massively reduce its value..

      1. Anonymous Custard Silver badge

        Re: Yes

        And if I'd managed to lose the equivalent of $120million down the back of the sofa, I think I'd be asked even more questions than they already have been. Plus wouldn't these have been the property of someone before, who seems to have conveniently forgotten they exist?

        I'd more wonder if they mysteriously appeared as a result of waking up next to a horses head...

    2. JurassicPark

      searching for loose change down the back of the sofa?

      That's a lot of loose change. Surprised they could find the sofa.

      How wealthy do you have to be not to notice c$180m is missing?

  7. Neil Barnes Silver badge

    I blame the notched quanta...

    Ms Fnd in a Lbry - Hal Draper

  8. Elmer Phud

    Ah, yesterday I found three packs of MtG cards while clearing out.

    Give 'em a few years and they'll be worth more than the bitcoins.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Cowboys, Ted! They're a bunch of cowboys! Oh, God

    1. Winkypop Silver badge

      Ahhh now Dougal

      They were only resting in my account..

  10. xperroni

    "[T]he outfit was not very organised"

    A textbook case of British understatement, surely?

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    His paintings have no value, until someone is prepared to pay something for it

    Gold has a value as an ore

    Tulip bulbs create more tulip bulbs so lose value

    Bitcoins are like the Piccasso, it's worth nothing unless someone will pay for it and that is the issue, we can speculate M Gox lost $200000000000000 worth but they also lost $0 worth

    The rareness of the piccasso makes it have intrinsic value, there will be no more Piccasso's painted

    more bitcoins mined all around means less value so the loss of the amounts of late will drive the price up eventually, so long as someone wants to buy them......and that is where the uncertainty factor is

    this is looking like a planned attacks on the bitcoin stores by another interested party

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Piccasso

      It's Picasso. Pablo Ruiz Picasso.

      That being a clear enough indication of the extent of your familiarity with art, may I suggest you refrain from bringing up the subject while trying to make some unrelated sort of point.

      The same could be said about your liberal use of the noun "value" and your attempted use of analogies. Generally speaking, the latter are resorted to either when you assume your audience to be almost completely uneducated about the subject at hand (which is why they're popular at the very beginning of first semester courses--in which case they're not patronising), or when the speaker himself does not know the subject well enough to describe it in its own terms.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Hands up, who doesn't want me to transfer the 232.40117423 bitcoins in my wallet to them?

  13. David Roberts

    Turn them upside down and shake them

    Then see what else falls out of their pockets.

    [Looked for suitable Biblical lost+found quotes but gave up.]

    Oh, how about:

    Luke 11:9

    "King James Bible

    And I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you."

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Turn them upside down and shake them

      Biblical quote, now you are talking fantasy.

    2. jpb421

      Re: Turn them upside down and shake them

      If you're looking for apt Biblical quotes surely the parable of the lost coin is most apt?

      Luke 15 vs 8 and 9:

      Or suppose a woman has ten silver coins and loses one. Doesn’t she light a lamp, sweep the house and search carefully until she finds it? 9 And when she finds it, she calls her friends and neighbours together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost coin.’


      1. Sorry that handle is already taken. Silver badge

        Re: Turn them upside down and shake them

        It's true. I often lose coins just so that I can find them and throw a party afterwards.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Now they have had a proper look, haven't they?

    Not just a "man-look"...

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  16. squigbobble


    an omnishamble of cockwombles

    Not unique by a long chalk. got knocked over earlier in the week, I've got a whole 0.023BTC in there somewhere so not exactly crying about it... The admin's being a bit more positive than the 'eeeep' that the Goxists let out.

  17. Mark 85 Silver badge

    Check the other couch next?

    Either this is a smoke screen and they're just saying "look what we found", or there's some really screwed up record-keeping going on.

    I'm also wondering about some really careful planning. I'm thinking is similar to a bank robber tossing candy while doing the getaway. It fills the street with kids to slow the cops down.

  18. This post has been deleted by its author

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