Lucky student accidentally resurrects $4M worth of Bitcoin buried in lost private keys

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However with their sudden fortune, a fortunate student said they would resist “expensive luxury” like a new car or home.

A student has claimed to have inadvertently discovered HODLed private keys beginning in 2011, which would unlock more than $4 million in Bitcoin.

As per BitcoinHolderThankU’s throwaway handle, the Reddit user was able to cash out around $4.2 million in Bitcoin (BTC) after discovering the missing keys to 127 BTC on Dec. 22, when the price of the crypto commodity was $23,000. Later, they liquidated the coins in the middle of the bull’s chase.

“I spent the next week figuring out how to safely and securely liquidate such a large amount of Bitcoin for the cheapest price possible,” said the Redditor. “I went back and forth between different [over-the-counter principal desks] and ultimately ended up selling all 127 Bitcoins for a price of $33,439.02 per coin minus a 0.15% fee. The net was roughly $4.24 million.”

In 2011 or 2012, they appear to have won Bitcoin by “surveys, watching videos, and completing random tasks” to potentially use the coins for the online game DarkOrbit to buy in-game money. Allegedly, the private keys were never actually lost, just forgotten on an older Dell machine model as BitcoinHolderThankU ended up not buying the currency.

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Unfortunately, by not holding for only a couple more weeks, if the Redditor’s account is to be believed, they lost out on $1 million of additional benefit. The price of Bitcoin has reached $41,000 since December, touching new all-time highs. BitcoinHolderThankU acknowledged that if the same scenario had worked out again, they “would not have sold all 127 Bitcoins.”

“To give myself credit, I did HODL for 8-9 years which is more than the vast majority of crypto users,” they said. “I definitely would’ve done things differently if I were given a second chance.”

Despite their sudden fortune, the Redditor says they will avoid “expensive luxuries” and intends to put the bulk of the funds into the S&P 500, adding:

“I don’t want to end up like one of those people who win the lottery and blow it all in a matter of months/years […] I’m going to continue living my life normally as I was on December 21st and every day before that.”

Not all stories about lost or forgotten keys have such a happy ending, alas. More than $285 million in Bitcoin could already be missing elsewhere in the U.K. Garbage dump after his personal laptop with his keys was inadvertently tossed away by an IT worker in 2013.

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