Bare with me here, it's been a log time since I even looked at bitcoin but recently remembered I tried to setup a mining machine back in 2013. I found my account to Slush's Pool, and in there, I found my bitcoin wallet address. it starts with "1CXP" submitted by
The issue I have now is, where/how the hell do I access my wallet? I don't remember where I set it up, or if it was something local to the machine I was using at the time. Hell, I don't even know if I have anything in it, but I'd like to find out.
Merry Xmas !
I am coming back to you with a follow up post, as I have helped many people cash out this year and I have streamlined the process. After my original post
, I received many requests to be more specific and provide more details. I thought that after the amazing rally we have been attending over the last few months, and the volatility of the last few days, it would be interesting to revisit more extensively.
The attitude of banks around crypto is changing slowly, but it is still a tough stance. For the first partial cash out I operated around a year ago for a client, it took me months to find a bank. They wouldn’t want to even consider the case and we had to knock at each and every door. Despite all my contacts it was very difficult back in the days. This has changed now, and banks have started to open their doors, but there is a process, a set of best practices and codes one has to follow.
I often get requests from crypto guys who are very privacy-oriented, and it takes me months to have them understand that I am bound by Swiss law on banking secrecy, and I am their ally in this onboarding process. It’s funny how I have to convince people that banks are legit, while on the other side, banks ask me to show that crypto millionaires are legit. I have a solid background in both banking and in crypto so I manage to make the bridge, but yeah sometimes it is tough to reconcile the two worlds. I am a crypto enthusiast myself and I can say that after years of work in the banking industry I have grown disillusioned towards banks as well, like many of you. Still an account in a Private bank is convenient and powerful. So let’s get started.
- A. What is required to open an account in a Private bank when you made your fortune through crypto.
There are two different aspects to your onboarding in a Swiss Private bank, compliance-wise.
*The origin of your crypto wealth
*Your background (residence, citizenship and probity)
These two aspects must be documented in-depth. How to document your crypto wealth.
Each new crypto millionaire has a different story. I may detail a few fun stories later in this post, but at the end of the day, most of crypto rich I have met can be categorized within the following profiles: the miner, the early adopter, the trader, the corporate entity, the black market, the libertarian/OTC buyer. The real question is how you prove your wealth is legit. 1. Context around the original amount/investment
Generally speaking, your first crypto purchase may not be documented. But the context around this acquisition can be. I have had many cases where the original amount was bought through Mtgox, and no proof of purchase could be provided, nor could be documented any Mtgox claim. That’s perfectly fine. At some point Mtgox amounted 70% of the bitcoin transactions globally, and people who bought there and managed to withdraw and keep hold of their bitcoins do not have any Mtgox claim. This is absolutely fine. However, if you can show me the record of a wire from your bank to Tisbane (Mtgox's parent company) it's a great way to start.
Otherwise, what I am trying to document here is the following: I need context. If you made your first purchase by saving from summer jobs, show me a payroll. Even if it was USD 2k. If you acquired your first bitcoins from mining, show me the bills of your mining equipment from 2012 or if it was through a pool mine, give me your slushpool account ref for instance. If you were given bitcoin against a service you charged, show me an invoice. 2. Tracking your wealth until today and making sense of it.
What I have been doing over the last few months was basically educating compliance officers. Thanks God, the blockchain is a global digital ledger! I have been telling my auditors and compliance officers they have the best tool at their disposal to lead a proper investigation. Whether you like it or not, your wealth can be tracked, from address to address. You may have thought all along this was a bad feature, but I am telling you, if you want to cash out, in the context of Private Banking onboarding, tracking your wealth through the block explorer is a boon. We can see the inflows, outflows. We can see the age behind an address. An early adopter who bought 1000 BTC in 2010, and let his bitcoin behind one address and held thus far is legit, whether or not he has a proof of purchase to show. That’s just common sense. My job is to explain that to the banks in a language they understand.
Let’s have a look at a few examples and how to document the few profiles I mentioned earlier. The trader.
I love traders. These are easy cases. I have a ton of respect for them. Being a trader myself in investment banks for a decade earlier in my career has taught me that controlling one’s emotions and having the discipline to impose oneself some proper risk management system is really really hard. Further, being able to avoid the exchange bankruptcy and hacks throughout crypto history is outstanding. It shows real survival instinct, or just plain blissed ignorance. In any cases traders at exchange are easy cases to corroborate since their whole track record is potentially available. Some traders I have met have automated their trading and have shown me more than 500k trades done over the span of 4 years. Obviously in this kind of scenario I don’t show everything to the bank to avoid information overload, and prefer to do some snacking here and there. My strategy is to show the early trades, the most profitable ones, explain the trading strategy and (partially expose) the situation as of now with id pages of the exchanges and current balance. Many traders have become insensitive to the risk of parking their crypto at exchange as they want to be able to trade or to grasp an occasion any minute, so they generally do not secure a substantial portion on the blockchain which tends to make me very nervous. The early adopter.
Provided that he has not mixed his coin, the early adopter or “hodler” is not a difficult case either. Who cares how you bought your first 10k btc if you bought them below 3$ ? Even if you do not have a purchase proof, I would generally manage to find ways. We just have to corroborate the original 30’000 USD investment in this case. I mainly focus on three things here:
*proof of early adoption I have managed to educate some banks on a few evidences specifically related to crypto markets. For instance with me, an old bitcointalk account can serve as a proof of early adoption. Even an old reddit post from a few years ago where you say how much you despise this Ripple premined scam can prove to be a treasure readily available to show you were early.
*story telling Compliance officers like to know when, why and how. They are human being looking for simple answers to simple questions and they don’t want like to be played fool. Telling the truth, even without a proof can do wonders, and even though bluffing might still work because banks don’t fully understand bitcoin yet, it is a risky strategy that is less and less likely to pay off as they are getting more sophisticated by the day.
*micro transaction from an old address you control This is the killer feature. Send a $20 worth transaction from an old address to my company wallet and to one of my partner bank’s wallet and you are all set ! This is gold and considered a very solid piece of evidence. You can also do a microtransaction to your own wallet, but banks generally prefer transfer to their own wallet. Patience with them please. they are still learning.
*signature message Why do a micro transaction when you can sign a message and avoid potentially tainting your coins ?
*ICO millionaire Some clients made their wealth participating in ETH crowdsale or IOTA ICO. They were very easy to deal with obviously and the account opening was very smooth since we could evidence the GENESIS TxHash flow. The miner
Not so easy to proof the wealth is legit in that case. Most early miners never took screenshot of the blocks on bitcoin core, nor did they note down the block number of each block they mined. Until the the Slashdot article from August 2010 anyone could mine on his laptop, let his computer run overnight and wake up to a freshly minted block containing 50 bitcoins back in the days. Not many people were structured enough to store and secure these coins, avoid malwares while syncing the blockchain continuously, let alone document the mined blocks in the process. What was 50 BTC worth really for the early miners ? dust of dollars, games and magic cards… Even miners post 2010 are generally difficult to deal with in terms of compliance onboarding. Many pool mining are long dead. Deepbit is down for instance and the founders are MIA. So my strategy to proof mining activity is as follow:
*Focusing on IT background whenever possible. An IT background does help a lot to bring some substance to the fact you had the technical ability to operate a mining rig.
*Showing mining equipment receipts. If you mined on your own you must have bought the hardware to do so. For instance mining equipment receipts from butterfly lab from 2012-2013 could help document your case. Similarly, high electricity bill from your household on a consistent basis back in the day could help. I have already unlocked a tricky case in the past with such documents when the bank was doubtful.
*Wallet.dat files with block mining transactions from 2011 thereafter This obviously is a fantastic piece of evidence for both you and me if you have an old wallet and if you control an address that received original mined blocks, (even if the wallet is now empty). I will make sure compliance officers understand what it means, and as for the early adopter, you can prove your control over these wallet through a microtransaction. With these kind of addresses, I can show on the block explorer the mined block rewards hitting at regular time interval, and I can even spot when difficulty level increased or when halvening process happened.
*Poolmining account. Here again I have educated my partner bank to understand that a slush account opened in 2013 or an OnionTip presence was enough to corroborate mining activity. The block explorer then helps me to do the bridge with your current wallet.
*Describing your set up and putting it in context In the history of mining we had CPU, GPU, FPG and ASICs mining. I will describe your technical set up and explain why and how your set up was competitive at that time. The corporate entity
Remember 2012 when we were all convinced bitcoin would take over the world, and soon everyone would pay his coffee in bitcoin? How naïve we were to think transaction fees would remain low forever. I don’t blame bitcoin cash supporters; I once shared this dream as well. Remember when we thought global adoption was right around the corner and some brick and mortar would soon accept bitcoin transaction as a common mean of payment? Well, some shop actually did accept payment and held. I had a few cases as such of shops holders, who made it to the multi million mark holding and had invoices or receipts to proof the transactions. If you are organized enough to keep a record for these trades and are willing to cooperate for the documentation, you are making your life easy. The digital advertising business is also a big market for the bitcoin industry, and affiliates partner compensated in btc are common. It is good to show an invoice, it is better to show a contract. If you do not have a contract (which is common since all advertising deals are about ticking a check box on the website to accept terms and conditions), there are ways around that. If you are in that case, pm me. The black market
Sorry guys, I can’t do much for you officially. Not that I am judging you. I am a libertarian myself. It’s just already very difficult to onboard legit btc adopters, so the black market is a market I cannot afford to consider. My company is regulated so KYC and compliance are key for me if I want to stay in business. Behind each case I push forward I am risking the credibility and reputation I have built over the years. So I am sorry guys I am not risking it to make an extra buck. Your best hope is that crypto will eventually take over the world and you won’t need to cash out anyway. Or go find a Lithuanian bank that is light on compliance and cooperative. The OTC buyer and the libertarian.
Generally a very difficult case. If you bought your stack during your journey in Japan 5 years ago to a guy you never met again; or if you accumulated on https://localbitcoins.com/
and kept no record or lost your account, it is going to be difficult. Not impossible but difficult. We will try to build a case with everything else we have, and I may be able to onboard you. However I am risking a lot here so I need to be 100% confident you are legit, before I defend you. Come & see me in Geneva, and we will talk. I will run forensic services like elliptic
, or scorechain
on an extract of your wallet. If this scan does not raise too many red flags, then maybe we can work together ! If you mixed your coins all along your crypto history, and shredded your seeds because you were paranoid, or if you made your wealth mining professionally monero over the last 3 years but never opened an account at an exchange. ¯_(ツ)_/¯ I am not a magician and don’t get me wrong, I love monero, it’s not the point. Cashing out ICOs
Private companies or foundations who have ran an ICO generally have a very hard time opening a bank account. The few banks that accept such projects would generally look at 4 criteria:
*Seriousness of the project Extensive study of the whitepaper to limit the reputation risk
*AML of the onboarding process ICOs 1.0 have no chance basically if a background check of the investors has not been conducted
*Structure of the moral entity List of signatories, certificate of incumbency, work contract, premises...
*Fiscal conformity Did the company informed the authorities and seek a fiscal ruling.
- B. The tax issue I am not a tax specialist, but I can say that this year I have seen it all. Again I am not judging. You made $100m hodling, and still wouldn’t pay your taxes ? Your decision.I personally advise everyone to pay their taxes, but also to be generous, to give to charities. I mean you eventually made it. Good for you. What about you contribute to make the world a better place now? I will stop patronizing you. It’s just my 2cts, and it’s your money.
For the record, I am not into the tax avoidance business, so people come to me with a set up and I see if I can make it work within the legal framework imposed to me.
First, stop thinking Switzerland is a “offshore heaven” Swiss banks have made deals with many governments for the exchange of fiscal information. If you are a French citizen, resident in France and want to open an account in a Private Bank in Switzerland to cash out your bitcoins, you will get slaughtered (>60%). There are ways around that, and I could refer you to good tax specialists for fiscal optimization, but I cannot organize it myself. It would be illegal for me. Swiss private banks makes it easy for you to keep a good your relation with your retail bank and continue paying your bills without headaches. They are integrated to SEPA, provide ebanking and credit cards.
For information, these are the kind of set up some of my clients came up with. It’s all legal; obviously I do not onboard clients that are not tax compliant. Further disclaimer: I did not contribute myself to these set up. Do not ask me to organize it for you. I won’t. EU tricks Swiss lump sum taxation
Foreign nationals resident in Switzerland can be taxed on a lump-sum basis if they are not gainfully employed in our country. Under the lump-sum tax regime, foreign nationals taking residence in Switzerland may choose to pay an expense-based tax instead of ordinary income and wealth tax. Attractive cantons for the lump sum taxation are Zug, Vaud, Valais, Grisons, Lucerne and Berne. To make it short, you will be paying somewhere between 200 and 400k a year and all expenses will be deductible.
Switzerland has adopted a very friendly attitude towards crypto currency in general. There is a whole crypto valley in Zug now. 30% of ICOs are operated in Switzerland. The reason is that Switzerland has thrived for centuries on banking secrecy, and today with FATCA and exchange of fiscal info with EU, banking secrecy is dead. Regulators in Switzerland have understood that digital ledger technologies were a way to roll over this competitive advantage for the generations to come. Switzerland does not tax capital gains on crypto profits. The Finma has a very pragmatic approach. They have issued guidance
- updated guidelines here
. They let the business get organized and operate their analysis on a case per case basis. Only after getting a deep understanding of the market will they issue a global fintech license in 2019. This approach is much more realistic than legislations which try to regulate everything beforehand. Italy new tax exemption.
It’s a brand new fiscal exemption. Go to Aoste, get residency and you could be taxed a 100k/year for 10years. Yes, really
What’s crazy in Europe is the lack of fiscal harmonization. Even if no one in Brussels dares admit it, every other country is doing fiscal dumping. Portugal is such a country and has proved very friendly fiscally speaking. I personally have a hard time trusting Europe. I have witnessed what happened in Greece over the last few years. Some of our ultra high net worth clients got stuck with capital controls. I mean no way you got out of crypto to have your funds confiscated at the next financial crisis! Anyway. FYI Malta
Generally speaking, if you get a residence somewhere you have to live there for a certain period of time. Being stuck in Italy is no big deal with Schengen Agreement, but in Malta it is a different story. In Malta, the ordinary residence scheme is more attractive than the HNWI residence scheme. Being an individual, you can hold a residence permit under this scheme and pay zero income tax in Malta in a completely legal way. Monaco
Not suitable for French citizens, but for other Ultra High Net worth individual, Monaco is worth considering. You need an account at a local bank as a proof of fortune, and this account generally has to be seeded with at least EUR500k. You also need a proof of residence. I do mean UHNI because if you don’t cash out minimum 30m it’s not interesting. Everything is expensive in Monaco. Real Estate is EUR 50k per square meter. A breakfast at Monte Carlo Bay hotel is 70 EUR. Monaco is sunny but sometimes it feels like a golden jail. Do you really want that for your kids? Dubaï
- Set up a company in Dubaï, get your resident card.
- Spend one day every 6 month there
- Be tax free
Some Private banks in Geneva do have the license to manage the assets of US persons and U.S citizens. However, do not think it is a way to avoid paying taxes in the US. Opening an account at an authorized Swiss Private banks is literally the same tax-wise as opening an account at Fidelity or at Bank of America in the US. The only difference is that you will avoid all the horror stories. Horror stories are all real by the way. In Switzerland, if you build a decent case and answer all the questions and corroborate your case in depth, you will manage to convince compliance officers beforehand. When the money eventually hits your account, it is actually available and not frozen.
The IRS and FATCA require to file FBAR if an offshore account is open. However FBAR is a reporting requirement and does not have taxes related to holding an account outside the US. The taxes would be the same if the account was in the US. However penalties for non compliance with FBAR are very large. The tax liability management is actually performed through the management of the assets ( for exemple by maximizing long term capital gains and minimizing short term gains).
The case for Porto Rico
. Full disclaimer here. I am not encouraging this. Have not collaborated on such tax avoidance schemes. if you are interested I strongly encourage you to seek a tax advisor and get a legal opinion. I am not responsible for anything written below. I am not going to say much because I am so afraid of uncle Sam that I prefer to humbly pass the hot potato to pwc
From here all it takes is a good advisor and some creativity to be tax free on your crypto wealth if you are a US person apparently. Please, please please don’t ask me more. And read the disclaimer again. Trust tricks
Generally speaking I do not accept fringe fiscal situation because it puts me in a difficult situation to the banks I work with, and it is already difficult enough to defend a legit crypto case. Trust might be a way to optimize your fiscal situation. Belize. Bahamas. Seychelles. Panama, You name it. At the end of the day, what matters for Swiss Banks are the beneficial owner and the settlor. Get a legal opinion, get it done, and when you eventually knock at a private bank’s door, don’t say it was for fiscal avoidance you stupid ! You will get the door smashed upon you. Be smarter. It will work. My advice is just to have it done by a great tax specialist lawyer, even if it costs you some money, as the entity itself needs to be structured in a professional way. Remember that with trust you are dispossessing yourself off your wealth. Not something to be taken lightly. “Anonymous” cash out.
Right. I think I am not going into this topic, neither expose the ways to get it done. Pm me for details. I already feel a bit uncomfortable with all the info I have provided. I am just going to mention many people fear that crypto exchange might become reporting entities soon, and rightly so. This might happen anyday. You have been warned. FYI, this only works for non-US and large cash out. The difference between traders an investors.
Danmark, Holland and Germany all make a huge difference if you are a passive investor or if you are a trader. ICO is considered investing for instance and is not taxed, while trading might be considered as income and charged aggressively. I would try my best to protect you and put a focus on your investor profile whenever possible, so you don't have to pay 52% tax if you do not have to :D
Full cash out or partial cash out?
- C. The cash out itself So you have accumulated patiently a good amount of wealth. For some of us who have been involved in crypto since 2010, it took years. Remember when BTC was stuck at 200$ for months? I personally feel like it was yesterday. There is no way you screw up your wealth by cashing out in a hurry or with low security standards. Here is how the cash out takes should place.
People who have been sitting on crypto for long have grown an emotional and irrational link with their coins. They come to me and say, look, I have 50m in crypto but I would like to cash out 500k only. So first let me tell you that as a wealth manager my advice to you is to take some off the table. Doing a partial cash out is absolutely fine. The market is bullish. We are witnessing a redistribution of wealth at a global scale. Bitcoin is the real #occupywallstreet, and every one will discuss crypto at Xmas eve which will make the market even more supportive beginning 2018, especially with all hedge funds entering the scene. If you want to stay exposed to bitcoin and altcoins, and believe these techs will change the world, it’s just natural you want to keep some coins. In the meantime, if you have lived off pizzas over the last years, and have the means to now buy yourself an nice house and have an account at a private bank, then f***ing do it mate ! Buy physical gold with this account, buy real estate, have some cash at hands. Even though US dollar is worthless to your eyes, it’s good and convenient to have some. Also remember your wife deserves it ! And if you have no wife yet and you are socially awkward like the rest of us, then maybe cashing out partially will help your situation ;) What the Private Banks expect.
Joke aside, it is important you understand something. If you come around in Zurich to open a bank account and partially cash out, just don’t expect Private Banks will make an exception for you if you are small. You can’t ask them to facilitate your cash out, buy a 1m apartment with the proceeds of the sale, and not leave anything on your current account. It won’t work. Sadly, under 5m you are considered small in private banking. The bank is ok to let you open an account, provided that your kyc and compliance file are validated, but they will also want you to become a client and leave some money there to invest. This might me despicable, but I am just explaining you their rules. If you want to cash out, you should sell enough to be comfortable and have some left. Also expect the account opening to last at least 3-4 week if everything goes well. You can't just open an account overnight. The cash out logistics.
Cashing out 1m USD a day in bitcoin or more is not so hard.
Let me just tell you this: Even if you get a Tier 4 account with Kraken and ask Alejandro there to raise your limit over $100k per day, Even if you have a bitfinex account and you are willing to expose your wealth there, Even if you have managed to pass all the crazy due diligence at Bitstamp,
The amount should be fractioned to avoid risking your full wealth on exchange and getting slaughtered on the price by trading big quantities. Cashing out involves significant risks at all time. There is a security risk of compromising your keys, a counterparty risk, a fat finger risk. Let it be done by professionals. It is worth every single penny.
Most importantly, there is a major difference between trading on an exchange and trading OTC. Even though it’s not publicly disclosed some exchange like Kraken do have OTC desks. Trading on an exchange for a large amount will weight on the prices. Bitcoin is a thin market. In my opinion over 30% of the coins are lost in translation forever. Selling $10m on an exchange in a day can weight on the prices more than you’d think. And if you trade on a exchange, everything is shown on record, and you might wipe out the prices because on exchanges like bitstamp or kraken ultimately your counterparties are retail investors and the market depth is not huge. It is a bit better on Bitfinex. It is way better to trade OTC. Accessing the institutional OTC market is not easy, and that is also the reason why you should ask a regulated financial intermediary if we are talking about huge amounts.
Last point, always chose EUR as opposed to USD. EU correspondent banks won’t generally block institutional amounts. However we had the cases of USD funds frozen or delayed by weeks.
Most well-known OTC desks are Cumberlandmining
(ask for Lucas), Genesis
(ask for Martin), Bitcoin Suisse AG
(ask for Niklas), circletrade
, or Altcoinomy
(ask for Olivier)
Very very large whales can also set up escrow accounts for massive block trades. This world, where blocks over 30k BTC are exchanged between 2 parties would deserve a reddit thread of its own. Crazyness all around. Your options: DIY or going through a regulated financial intermediary.
Execution trading is a job in itself. You have to be patient, be careful not to wipe out the order book and place limit orders, monitor the market intraday for spikes or opportunities. At big levels, for a large cash out that may take weeks, these kind of details will save you hundred thousands of dollars. I understand crypto holders are suspicious and may prefer to do it by themselves, but there are regulated entities who now offer the services. Besides, being a crypto millionaire is not a guarantee you will get institutional daily withdrawal limits at exchange. You might, but it will take you another round of KYC with them, and surprisingly this round might be even more aggressive that the ones at Private banks since exchange have gone under intense scrutiny by regulators lately.
The fees for cashing out through a regulated financial intermediary to help you with your cash out should be around 1-2% flat on the nominal, not more. And for this price you should get the full package: execution/monitoring of the trades AND onboarding in a private bank. If you are asked more, you are being abused.
Of course, you also have the option to do it yourself. It is a way more tedious and risky process. Compliance with the exchange, compliance with the private bank, trading BTC/fiat, monitoring the transfers…You will save some money but it will take you some time and stress. Further, if you approach a private bank directly, it will trigger a series of red flag to the banks. As I said in my previous post, they call a direct approach a “walk-in”. They will be more suspicious than if you were introduced by someone and won’t hesitate to show you high fees and load your portfolio with in-house products that earn more money to the banks than to you. Remember also most banks still do not understand crypto so you will have a lot of explanations to provide and you will have to start form scratch with them! The paradox of crypto millionaires
Most of my clients who made their wealth through crypto all took massive amount of risks to end up where they are. However, most of them want their bank account to be managed with a low volatility fixed income capital preservation risk profile. This is a paradox I have a hard time to explain and I think it is mainly due to the fact that most are distrustful towards banks and financial markets in general. Many clients who have sold their crypto also have a cash-out blues in the first few months. This is a classic situation. The emotions involved in hodling for so long, the relief that everything has eventually gone well, the life-changing dynamics, the difficulties to find a new motivation in life…All these elements may trigger a post cash-out depression. It is another paradox of the crypto rich who has every card in his hand to be happy, but often feel a bit sad and lonely. Sometimes, even though it’s not my job, I had to do some psychological support. A lot of clients have also become my friends, because we have the same age and went through the same “ordeal”. First world problem I know… Remember, cashing out is not the end. It’s actually the beginning. Don’t look back, don’t regret. Cash out partially, because it does not make sense to cash out in full, regret it and want back in. relax. The race to cash out crypto billionaire and the concept of late exiter.
The Winklevoss brothers are obviously the first of a series. There will be crypto billionaires. Many of them. At a certain level you can have a whole family office working for you to manage your assets and take care of your needs . However, let me tell you it’s is not because you made it so big that you should think you are a genius and know everything better than anyone. You should hire professionals to help you. Managing assets require some education around the investment vehicles and risk management strategies. Sorry guys but with all the respect I have for wallstreebet
, AMD and YOLO stock picking, some discipline is necessary. The investors who have made money through crypto are generally early adopters. However I have started to see another profile popping up. They are not early adopters. They are late exiters. It is another way but just as efficient. Last week I met the first crypto millionaire I know who first bough bitcoin over 1000$. 55k invested at the beginning of this year. Late adopter & late exiter is a route that can lead to the million. Last remarks.
I know banks, bankers, and FIAT currencies are so last century. I know some of you despise them and would like to have them burn to the ground. With compliance officers taking over the business, I would like to start the fire myself sometimes. I hope this extensive guide has helped some of you. I am around if you need more details. I love my job despite all my frustration towards the banking industry because it makes me meet interesting people on a daily basis. I am a crypto enthusiast myself, and I do think this tech is here to stay and will change the world. Banks will have to adapt big time. Things have started to change already; they understand the threat is real. I can feel the generational gap in Geneva, with all these old bankers who don’t get what’s going on. They glaze at the bitcoin chart on CNBC in disbelief and they start to get it. This bitcoin thing is not a joke. Deep inside, as an early adopter who also intends to be a late exiter, as a libertarian myself, it makes me smile with satisfaction.
Cheers. @swisspb on telegram
I made a backup of my wallet (Default client) when I first got it with no transactions on it. I transferred some bitcoins to it but had to reformat. So I recovered my wallet but it has gone back to 0. Have I lost these coins because the backup was before the transfer? I have checked the address of the transaction and of my wallet and they match. There is a tick in the corner of the client and it says its up to date. submitted by
Anyhelp would be greatly appreciated.
I first learned of Bitcoin in 2010, installed the client and got my first bitcoin from The Bitcoin Faucet. Thank you Gavin, I assume it was your property. submitted by
I fell down the rabbit hole after reading Satoshi's paper (read it about 10 times so far. It gets better each time). I enabled bitcoind's mining feature on my home CPU (and possibly my work machine) and managed to solo mine a block. At the time, they were worth about $0.50 ea. A few months later, and zero blocks found, I compiled some code that allowed me to mine using my nVidia GPU. Still no blocks. Welcome slush pool! Bitcoins were flowing again (about 1/week). At this point, I figured I could make some money at this (price ~$1.00), so I spent $170 on an ATI GPU (about 10 times faster than the nVidia).
Difficulty was increasing, people were building huge GPU rigs - I wasn't one of them. I bought a few coins through MtGox and a few more with paypal. But for the most part, I was happy getting about 1BTC/week on my ATI card. I wasn't ready to spend my "real" money just yet.
I "invested" some assets on GLBSE and put it into a mining company called BITBOND. Was feeling pretty good until GLBSE was shut down and lost 50% of what I invested. I guess Bitcoin Savings and Trust (BST) was a bad idea. But, hey we're just playing around with digital tokens. No worries, I could afford to lose it - maybe $200 worth at the time. Live and learn.
Bitcoin velocity started to increase with Eric's Satoshi Dice and Charlie's BitInstant. Up to $28... Have to buy more. Crash! Back to $2.00 and bailed. Lost another $200.00.
In 2012, I made some paper wallets and gifted all my family members some BTC for x-mas. They were worth about $13/BTC. I still keep an eye on the accounts with watch only addresses on Blockchain.info. Paper wallets were created with Diceware and Amir's sx/libbitcoin, pen and paper.
GPU mining was puttering out, so I spent $300 on a BFL 5GHz ASIC with paypal. I received mine in July of 2013, mined 2 BTC over two weeks, then sold it for $350 on ebay. The mined coins were worth about $300, so I doubled my money. The difficulty increases went lunar, and that BFL miner never mined another full bitcoin. Sorry e-bay buyer.
My mining days were over and Coinbase came online. Since then, I've been lazily buying $50/week using Coinbase's recurring buy feature. All the way up to $1200 and all the way back down to $170. I've been here before. Each time though, I have more coins than I had before - and that's all that matters to me.
Bitcoin's not made me rich. I'm not driving a Ferrari with BITCOIN plates... yet. I'm only in as much as I can afford to lose. It's been a fun ride.
To all the people and companies mentioned, and to all of you building the future, Thank You.
Not sure if this is ok to post or the best area or what... I used to mine coins several years ago and I had a wallet and mined on Slush's pool. I acquired maybe 1 coin and spent .75 of it (on like random $50 amazon cards.. ughhhh) and then forgot all about it... submitted by
I was going through some old folders on my backup drives and stuff not too long ago and with all the fervor going on, thought to look up my old BTC folders and found that I still had some of the bitcoin and mining folders laying around...
I used CG miner and I believe the default BTC wallet... I remember I used that wallet to backup the wallet to a .dat file, and when I looked at my account on Slush's pool, it showed me the wallet address I sent stuff to, and it said that I still have a balance of .25 BTC in it....
Is there any way to recover this? I installed the BTC wallet and I am running it to have it catch up to everything, but I don't see any place to import a backup file, just export... I seem to still have my wallet.dat and I am sure I could guess any password I would have put on it...
I am under the assumption that all is lost, but until today I had not bothered to log into my old pool and check my history and what wallet stuff was sent to, so it renewed my interest...
If recoverable, what is the best next step?
Any help would be really great. Please be gentile, I am pretty nubs with this stuff even after lurking on here for the past couple months...
Bitfinex - one of the world's largest Bitcoin exchanges
Kraken - world's largest EUR Bitcoin exchange based on volume
LocalBitcoins - world's largest P2P Bitcoin exchange
Bitstamp - one of the world's largest Bitcoin exchanges
Gemini - one of the world's largest Bitcoin exchanges
Poloniex - world's largest cryptocurrency exchange
Bittrex - world's second largest cryptocurrency exchange
BitQuick - major cash to Bitcoin exchange in the USA
Vaultoro - gold/bitcoin exchange
VirWoX - world's largest Paypal to Bitcoin exchange
Zebpay - one of India's largest Bitcoin exchanges
CoinMama - one of the world's largest credit card to Bitcoin brokers
BitPanda - one of Europe's largest Bitcoin brokers
CEX.io - top global Bitcoin and crypto exchange
coinhouse - credit card to Bitcoin broker run by Ledger
Bitcoin.de - one of Europe's largest P2P Bitcoin exchanges
Bittylicious - one of the UK's largest Bitcoin brokers
Coinfloor - European Bitcoin broker and exchange
BitBargain - UK Bitcoin exchangd
Paymium - Bitcoin broker based in France
Bity - large European Bitcoin exchange
Satoshi Counter - Canadian OTC Bitcoin exchange
Bitaccess - Canadia Bitcoin ATM network
SurBitcoin - Venezuela's largest Bitcoin exchange
Cryptobuyer - Venezuelan Bitcoin exchange
bit2c - Israel's top Bitcoin exchange
Bits of Gold - Israel's largest Bitcoin broker
CoinHako - one of Singapore's largest Bitcoin exchanges
Volabit - Mexican Bitcoin exchange
Satoshi Tango - Latin American Bitcoin exchange
Mercado Bitcoin - Brazilian Bitcoin exchange
FOXBIT - Brazilian Bitcoin exchange
OKCoin - Chinese Bitcoin exchange
Huobi - Chinese Bitcoin exchange
LakeBTC - Bitcoin exchange
Gatecoin - Bitcoin exchange
Bitrefill - mobile phone topups with Bitcoin
CoinJar - Australian Bitcoin broker
BuyaBitcoin - Australian cash to bitcoin exchange
Coin Loft - Australian cash to Bitcoin exchange
Urdubit - Bitcoin exchange based in Pakistan
Bitcoin Cambodia - Camobdian Bitcoin broker
Bitt - Caribbean Bitcoin exchange
bitcoin.co.id - Indonesia's largest Bitcoin exchange
Coincheck - one of Japan's largest Bitcoin exchanges
coins.co.th - one of Thailand's largest Bitcoin brokers/exchange
bitcoin.co.th - one of Thailand's largest Bitcoin brokers/exchange
MaiCoin - Taiwanese Bitcoin exchange
Bitonic - Dutch Bitcoin broker
Bitrush - Dutch Bitcoin broker
BitBay - Bitcoin broker based in Poland
Bitcoin Romania - largest Romanian Bitcoin exchange & broker
Nairaex - Nigeria's largest Bitcoin exchange
Bitsewa - Nepal's largest Bitcoin exchange
Wall of Coins - major US cash to Bitcoin exchange
LibertyX - major US cash to Bitcoin exchange
CoinCorner - European Bitcoin broker
Cubits - European Bitcoin broker
Bitit - European Bitcoin broker
itBit - OTC Bitcoin trading
Anycoin Direct - European Bitcoin broker
Belgacoin - large European Bitcoin exchange/broker
Bisq - decentralized Bitcoin exchange
KeepKey - hardware Bitcoin wallet
Ledger Wallet - hardware Bitcoin wallet
TREZOR - hardware Bitcoin wallet
Electrum - Bitcoin desktop wallet
GreenAddress - Bitcoin web wallet
Slush Pool - Bitcoin mining pool
Samourai Wallet - Android Bitcoin wallet
breadwallet - most popular iOS Bitcoin wallet
Mycelium - popular Android Bitcoin wallet
Please help list more in the comments.
''' 70+ Bitcoin companies, exchange and wallets that did NOT agree to Segwit2x Go1dfish undelete link unreddit undelete link
If Blockchain.info would add the following features to their online wallet, it could help reduce the profitability for miners at Ghash.io and perhaps convince some to mine elsewhere. submitted by
When you go to send bitcoins from your blockchain.info wallet, there could be a checkbox that you could check if you do not want the transaction fee to go to Ghash.
If you check that box, then your transaction will be constructed with no fee. Instead of a fee, there will be a .0002 output to an address controlled by blockchain.info. When each block is solved, blockchain will spend the full contents of that address to the address the block reward was sent to if the block was solved by one of a set of approved mining pools.
Users could select the mining pools they want to be able to mine their blocks. For example, they could pick BTC Guild, Eligius, Slush, and P2Pool.
Users would have to wait longer for the first confirmation, but for some transactions, it is acceptable to wait an hour or two for the first confirmation.
Insignificant pools would be incentivized to mine on p2pool in order to take advantage of these user targeted fees.
Edit: To avoid the need for an escrow, wallets could do the following:
Suppose you want to reward either of 2 pools for mining your transaction. You can generate two different transactions. One spends the coins and sends a fee to pool #1, the other spends the same coins (a double-spend) and sends a fee to pool #2. Each pool chooses the version of your transaction that rewards themselves, and mines on it, and whoever finds the block wins.
I mined bitcoins in march of 2012, back when they were like 2 dollars or somehthing, I mined in slushs pool and ended up mining almost 10 coins. I used the standard mining client QT? I don't have a backup of my wallet, I know the public address, and I know the password that my private key was encrypted with on the qt client, it prompted me for a password at the time. I really didn't know the basics(and still really don't) and assumed this password is what gave me access to my coins. Is there anyway an encrypted version of a private key and be exported and then that password that I entered in the QT client be used to unencrypt the private key? submitted by
Hierarchical Deterministic Wallets
Bitcoin Wallets generate and store the private keys that control a user's funds. These keys are simply random numbers, chosen by the wallet from a range of numbers so vast that it is essentially impossible for there to be a collision with another wallet doing the same thing. Deterministic wallets
, also known as HD wallets
help to simplify backing up and restoring wallets by using a random seed number to deterministically generate all of a wallet's private keys.
Private Key Backups
Whenever a Bitcoin user receives funds, they need a new private key. This means that the set of numbers that are important to store and back up is increasing indefinitely. In the original Bitcoin wallet, this required refreshing a back-up with a new one every time a user received funds.
Over time, Bitcoin grew more valuable and this burden of security grew more tiresome and costly. To address the issue Satoshi Nakamoto in October of 2010 released Bitcoin version 0.3.14
which contained a key pool
feature. This feature automatically pre-generated a set of keys, to remain in abeyance for the user's next receipt of funds. This made backing up a much less frequent necessity, only being necessary after key pool exhaustion.
Over the following years, many other methods of improving key backups were tried. A popular concept of a paper wallet
arose: printing a private key onto paper to store in a secure location. However this concept fell out of favor as being too complicated, vulnerable to printer information leaks, and encouraging address re-use.
Type 1 Deterministic Wallets
In August of 2011 Mike Caldwell sought to simplify and streamline the process of managing a collection of private keys. He created
a Windows application called Bitcoin Address Utility
that used a single random pass-phrase to deterministically create private keys from a single seed: essentially choosing one random number and then feeding it into a formula that would always produce more random numbers from the starting one.
This created a much easier way to backup private keys: simply secure the original random seed and restoring becomes a simple exercise of running the seed through the algorithm again.
Type 2 Deterministic Wallets
Mike Caldwell's Type 1 deterministic wallet design was based on a simple scheme that had a significant limitation: to receive funds with a Type 1 wallet required also having access to the private keys that could spend them. In situations such as merchant scripts or exchange wallets, this represented a security issue.
Before Mike Caldwell published his Type 1 wallet, in June of 2011 Greg Maxwell had already outlined
a theoretical improvement to the Type 1 scheme, in which the public and private key generation might be separated to improve the security of stored funds. In Greg's outlined Type 2 scheme, a script could use what is called a master public key
to generate new addresses, without ever being able to spend those funds.
In February of 2012, Pieter Wuille came up with a formalization and standardized version of this concept, in BIP 32
. A surge of wallet development activity followed the deterministic wallet concept. Since the master seed behind the wallet may be represented as a simple series of twelve words, it was widely considered to be the superior method for Bitcoin wallet private key generation.
Alan Reiner was the first to implement a Type 2 seed in Armory Wallet, and helped give feedback to the BIP 32 formalization. Since then, every major wallet has moved to support the feature.
BIP 44 Deterministic Wallets
After BIP 32, development of Type 2 deterministic wallets progressed to a state where additional features and standardization was sought to be defined. In April of 2014 Marek Palatinus, also known as Slush
, and Pavol Rusnak, Slush's employee at his company SatoshiLabs, sought to advance the state of deterministic wallets by adapting advancements in their own Type 2 hardware wallet Trezor into a standard they authored in BIP 44
Features promoted by the BIP 44 standard included a mechanism for internal pass-phrase protected accounts inside of a wallet seed, a standard for using the wallet seed across multiple chains, such as for Bitcoin Testnet, and an increased standardization of gap limits and change address separation.
Deterministic Wallet Caveats
Despite the huge improvement in the state of Bitcoin technology that HD wallets represent, there are some outstanding issues and drawbacks or gotchas that may present difficulties.
Deterministic wallets generally present users with a dictionary derived random pass-phrase that actually represents a master seed number in a form that is easier for humans to deal with. But this ease-of-use has sometimes tempted developers into allowing users to set their own pass-phrase, a very bad idea. Users are extremely bad at choosing a properly random pass-phrase, and this behavior can lead to loss of funds. For this reason, all well-maintained wallets have ceased the practice of encouraging users to invent their own pass-phrases.
Another issue that sometimes confronts users in unexpected ways is that the seeds created by deterministic wallets should not be shared between wallets from different software projects. The reason for this is that the standard for deterministic wallets is generally not actually adopted by all wallets, or there are still areas left unspecified. Due to these small differences, seeds may superficially appear to be share-able between wallets, but in actuality leave some coins difficult to access from the non-originating wallet. To switch between deterministic wallets, the best practice recommendation is to initiate fund transfers on the Blockchain.
From a security and privacy perspective, under normal circumstances a deterministic wallet is just as good as a wallet in which random keys are individually generated. However use of the public master key can prove the exception to that rule. Although it is called a public
master key, for privacy reasons it should not be shared publicly, as it can link all wallet addresses together. Another important reason it should not be shared is that if a single private key derived from the private seed is leaked and the public master key is also known, all the other private keys may be derived as well. This type of theft is quite uncommon, but for these reasons it is strongly recommended that the master public key still be treated as guarded information.
One practice that must differ between using an individually generated wallet and a deterministic wallet is the practice of creating addresses that are never used. HD wallets have a key implementation detail in the way that they calculate wallet balances: they go through their deterministic algorithm sequentially to determine if each private key has been used, stopping when no further activity is detected. This is a critical optimization, an HD wallet cannot scan endlessly or know automatically all of its balance information without individual queries. To provide a safety margin, HD wallets use something called a gap limit
, which represents the number of keys checked that have no activity before the balance query will cease its sequential checking. This gap limit can means that creating many addresses that are never used is a bad practice and can lead to users mistakenly believing their funds have been lost, if more unused addresses are created beyond the gap limit safety margin.
A powerful feature of BIP 44 HD wallets is the internal pass phrase account system. This feature addresses a common security concern amongst people who worry about keeping their seed backups secure from theft: it adds an internal password to the stored seed. The feature also powers another use-case, a scenario in which the owner is confronted with the seed and forced to give access to it. As a precautionary measure, the owner may create a red-herring pass phrase and a real pass-phrase, pretending that the red-herring phrase contains the entirety of the funds when forced to open the wallet under duress. But with this power also comes risk deriving from any situation where users choose pass phrases to remember. Human generated pass phrases should generally be considered weak: a brute-force attack can most often bypass them. And memorized pass phrases can be easily forgotten, leading to an annoying situation where funds are temporarily inaccessible, or if a truly strong pass-phrase has been chosen, permanently lost.
Slush Pool is not operating as a cryptocurrency wallet, therefore it is not possible to generate your payout address at the pool site. However, there are plenty of cryptocurrency wallets available where you can easily create your own address. We recommend the Trezor Hardware Wallet for maximum security. Lists of other usable wallets for: Bitcoin; Zcash; Once you have an address, go to Settings ... Before joining a mining pool: You’ll need a bitcoin wallet. Why? This is because all Bitcoin mining pools will ask you for a Bitcoin address that will be used to send your mining rewards and payouts. Our guide on the best bitcoin wallets will help you get a wallet. Read the full guide. The Biggest Mining Pools. The list below details the biggest Bitcoin mining pools. This is based on info ... Hello Miner, thank you for choosing Slush Pool! Our help center is the right place where you can learn how to start mining, troubleshoot your mining issues, or simply learn more about mining with our pool.. Feel free to click through the articles or use the search functionality located on the right side of the top bar. It searches not only on this site but also on our dedicated support site ... Abschließend müssen Sie noch ein Bitcoin-Wallet über einen Mining-Client einrichten: Slush Pool als Mining-Anbieter für Bitcoin. (Bild: Screenshot) Bitcoin: Richten Sie einen Mining-Client ein. Der Miningpool-Account allein ist nicht ausreichend, um erfolgreich am Bitcoins-Mining teilzunehmen. Dafür benötigen Sie in der Regel noch einen Mining-Client. In diesem melden Sie sich mit Ihrem ... Slush's bitcoin mining pool. Our servers are distributed around the world. The intelligent load balancing and fail-over system ensures you are up and running 99.9% of the time.
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