If you're thinking about upgrading your PC, be sure to backup every bit of important data on your storage device before making the transition, otherwise you could be out $67,000. Well, probably not, but it did supposedly happen to some poor soul who posted his sad story on Reddit (opens in new tab).
Posted under the username me_is_idiot, the former college student explained how he heard about Bitcoins around six years ago and how they were going to be the next big thing. He figured he might as well collect some to supplement the money he was bringing in through websites he had setup with some sketchy ad networks.
"Over the course of one semester I'd gotten around 150 Bitcoins, which at the time was worth around $11. What a waste of fucking time!," he thought. "These things haven't exploded like they were supposed to, back to my matched betting and awesome websites!"
He stored the Bitcoins on his laptop, which he upgraded a year later with more RAM and a faster hard drive. So as not to lose his Bitcoins—his whole $11—he penned a "little sarcastic note" to himself and folded it over his old hard drive.
That was six years ago. He since graduated and is making "decent(ish" money, and until recently forgot all about those Bitcoins.
"Fast forward to last month and I'm moving to a smaller apartment (more expensive area), and had to be picky about what I could take. I had an old box of PC parts. I had a quick look through and marveled at the 256MB RAM sticks, the 40GB HDDs. I even had a few floppy disks! All of it worthless with today's hardware. So in the trash it all went," he said.
Then earlier this week, he found the sarcastic note he'd written to himself while unpacking one of his boxes.
"I chuckled to myself for a split second before realizing bitcoins are worth a fair bit today, at which point panic set it. I've been Googling for several hours but it seems I'm fucked, the Bitcoins are gone!," he said. "At least they weren't worth the millions that my idiotic self thought when I first found the note, but that's not much consolation."
No, they're not worth millions of dollars, but the Bitcoins that now reside on a hard drive that's most likely in a landfill somewhere are worth in the neighborhood of $67,000. Talk about a gut punch!
All he has as evidence of the Bitcoins is the note he wrote to himself. If he used a wallet, he doesn't remember which one, nor does he have any registration details or private keys. Barring a bit of dumb luck, his Bitcoins are gone forever. The best thing he can do now is to stop checking their value..