$200K In Bitcoins Stolen

46,000 Bitcoins, amounting to more than $200,000, have been stolen in a clever hack on Linode, a service that allows customers to run virtual machines on remote servers.

Bitcoin is the first digital currency that is completely distributed. The network is made up of users like yourself so no bank or payment processor is required between you and whoever you're trading with. This decentralization is the basis for Bitcoin's security and freedom.

Your Bitcoins can be accessed from anywhere with an Internet connection. Anybody can start mining, buying, selling or accepting Bitcoins regardless of their location.

Take a look at this quick, informative video to learn more about Bitcoin.


(How does Bitcoin work?)

The heist took place in the following manner:

Andresen was using Linode to operate his "Bitcoin Faucet"—a website that doles out small amounts of new coins to users as a way to stimulate interest in the currency. Merak Palatinus was using Linode to communally mint new Bitcoins in a miners pool. Zhou Tong was using Linode to operate a Bitcoin trading site called Bitcoinica. Each also had enough Bitcoins stored on the file system to facilitate daily transactions.

The thief, it seems, was able to obtain customer support privileges which allowed him to find out which customers were holding Bitcoin wallets. The thief was then able to log in to the accounts through a weakness in the Linode manager—which customers use to configure their virtual machines—reboot the machines and change the root passwords. After that, it's take the money and run.

Linode has acknowledged the problem and is working to correct it. For now, Bitcoin value is holding steady at $4.60, perhaps due in part to the fact that Bitcoin's developers are accepting the loss.

If the graphics had been better, this theft might have looked like the heist in Charles Stross' 2007 novel Halting State:

The doors are three times as high as a tall man, carved from giant ebony beams clasped in a frame of some silvery metal... But they're not silvery now - they're glowing dull red, then a bright, rosy pulse of heat lights them up from the outside, and the doors begin to collapse inwards...

In through the smoke marches a formation of monstrous soldiers. They're larger than life and twice as gnarly, prognathous green-skinned jaws featuring tusks capped in gold...

"You're looking at an Orcish war band... The thing behind them is a dragon. They seem to have brought him along for fire support...

Over the space of a minute they denude the floor of the bank, snatching up the treasures that are inexplicably popping into view from the ethereal vaults...
(Read more about Stross' virtual world theft)

Via IEEE Spectrum; see also the Bitcoin site.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 3/7/2012)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 2 )

Related News Stories - (" Culture ")

Save Your Brain's Connectome, Upload Yourself Elsewhere
'You've got remote storage. How regular is the update?' - Richard Morgan, 2003.

TMS Decreases Belief In God, Increases Belief In Immigrants
'... Setting up the same currents, the same basic ideas, in them all.' - Edmond Hamilton, 1938.

Blockchain Used To Verify Election Results
'Any adult could punch into the phone his or her code, followed by a yes or no.' - John Brunner, 1975.

We Could Downgrade Puerto Rico - And Thereby Save It
'It was cheaper to pay the refugees to go without up-to-the-minute equipment.' - John Brunner, 1976.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

IBM's Grain Of Sand Computer
'Our ancestors... thought to make the very sand beneath their feet intelligent...'

Liquid Metal Shape-Changing 'Soft Robotics'
'A mimetic poly-alloy... 'What the hell does that mean?''

The Hammock Caravan And Italo Calvino's Octavia
'Now I will tell you how Octavia, the spider-web city, is made.'

Super-Resolution Microscopy Provides '4D' Views
View the magnified interior of living cells.

Have I Seen The Tesla Roadster Story Before?
'Only it wasn't a vessel. It was an automobile...'

Watch 'Do You Trust This Computer' For Free Today
Thanks for making this available, Elon.

Self-Driving Car Ticketed
This just missed making my day.

Elon Musk Tweets Versions Of Clarke's Operation Cleanup
'Fortunately, the old orbital forts were superbly equipped for this task.'

Burner Generates Temporary Phone Numbers
'Interesting phone system he's got, by the way...'

Walmart’s Autonomous Robot Bees
Everyone loves bees.

EA Created AI That Taught Itself To Play Battlefield
Harmless fun for computer scientists.

Is Teleportation A Death Sentence?
'A long trail of dead, he thought, left across the stars...'

New Brain Scanner Lets You Move Around
'In Bob Arctor's living room his thousand dollar custom-quality cephscope crafted by Altec...'

Can An Entire Brain Be Simulated In A Computer?
'The miles of relays and photocells had given way to the spongy globe of platinum iridium about the size of the human brain.'

Physicists Try To Turn Light Into Matter
If E=mc squared, then... m=E/c squared!

Save Your Brain's Connectome, Upload Yourself Elsewhere
'You've got remote storage. How regular is the update?'

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.