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4 Biggest Bitcoin Thefts, Frauds and Heists

by Fahad Saleem

Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies in general are the safest forms of money in the world. But that doesn’t mean that this money can’t be stolen. Bitcoins have been stolen since their inception. In this article we will talk about the biggest Bitcoin thefts and heists. Many bitcoin thefts 2017 took place too. But here, we will only mention the biggest bitcoin theft and heists based on their total worth.

Bitcoin Savings & Trust

One of the biggest Bitocin theft started in 2011, when Bitcoin Savings & Trust, also commonly known as BST, was started by known closed Trendon Shavers. Trendon Shavers, also known as Pirate, started selling invested bitcoins at a higher rate and buying them back at the market rate. The Pirate used to give people a high interest rate on their Bitcoin deposits. After a few months of the Ponzi scheme, the investment trust succeeded in getting the market’s attention. The Pirate soon claimed that over 500,000 bitcoins had been deposited to it by investors around the world. With increasing transactions and load, it became difficult to sustain the business model. Pirate slashed interest rate, which resulted in massive withdrawals and suspicion. In 2012, Pirate was announced a defaulter. Tendon Shavers was arrested in 2014. Last year, he was sentenced to 18 months in prison. Shavers was also fined a whopping $40 million.

Silk Road

Silk Road was a dark internet marketplace where illegal products were sold. The website was the brainchild of Ross Ulbricht, who is also known as Dread Pirate Roberts. Silk Route used to accept Bitcoins as it was staunchly against banks and regulation. Thousands of people used to shop on Silk Road and pay through Bitcoins. Silk Road website was shut down in 2013. The FBI sized seized 26,000 bitcoins from different accounts of the website. The total worth of these bitcoins was a whopping $3.6 million at the time. In 2014, the agency took hold of 144,000 more bitcoins. These bitcoins belonged to Robert Ulbricht and their total worth was over $28 million.  These bitcoins was later sold in an online auction.


MyBitcoin was an electronic wallet service using which people used to store and save their Bitcoins. The website shut down suddenly in July 2011. The website claimed in a statement that over 51% of its Bitcoins had been stolen. The website proceeded to refund 49% of every customers’ savings. According to an estimate by Bitcointalk forum, around 78739 Bitcoins were lost in this Bitcoin theft and heist.

Linode Bitcoin Theft

In 2012, famous web host Linode was attacked by hackers who stole over 40,000 bitcoins from the servers of bitcoin related websites. Estimates suggest that the net worth of these bitcoins was about $71,000. Over $15,000 worth of bitcoins were stolen from a single website (bitcoinmedia), while another major chunk was stolen from a famous bitcoin website, Bitcoinica.

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