I had a Bitcoin and Someone Lost It! (My Quadriga story)

I had an entire Bitcoin sitting in a currency exchange… more than 1.1 Bitcoins in fact to be more precise. I initially invested about a year ago as Bitcoin was growing and gaining in popularity. I saw (and still do see) a bright future for cryptocurrency – a few years down the road it definitely could be the primary currency we use. Excited on investing in my first Bitcoin I decided to purchase it through Quadriga, which *WAS* Canada’s most popular cryptocurrency exchange from what I could tell. It seemed like the perfect, reputable option for me to purchase through… and all went well with acquiring my 1.1+ Bitcoins, until it turn a major, dramatic turn.

I unfortunately made the mistake of keeping entire investment (all of the Bitcoin that I had purchased) on the exchange, assuming it would be safe behind the firewalls of Qudriga, fending off potential hackers or online thieves – potentially even safer than putting it into my own digital wallet I figured, because I was worried I might lose the digital wallet codes and such.¬†Well, I was right about it not being stolen by any external thieves, but wrong about it being safe because the guy who owned the company, CEO Gerald Cotten, is said to have died and never shared any of the passwords to be able to access all the cryptocurrency that was being stored! That’s right, millions of dollars in Bitcoin… 250 million in fact… completely lost inside of Cottens encrypted laptop, or at least so the story goes. Quadriga has apparently hired professional hackers who attempted to hack into Cottens laptop, but they were not successful. Which means that my investment totally disappeared – all of my Bitcoin is gone.

There’s a lot of conspiracies floating around regarding this – people are bringing up topics such as how cheap and relatively easy it is to acquire a fake death certificate¬†where he was at the time of his death, in India, and that it’s somewhat questionable that he signed his will less than two weeks before passing. I’m not sure what my opinion is on the faked death conspiracy theories, but this whole situation certainly is questionable to say the least.

Quadriga has now filed for ‘Creditors Protection’ which gives them a grace period of 30 days to try and fix this mess that they’ve gotten themselves into. Until then, all investors are stuck in limbo and are unable to take legal action. However, the media is speculating that Quadriga is likely to declare bankruptcy if they are unable to retrieve the passwords and lost Bitcoin, leaving investors empty handed with no option of taking legal action.

Notice on Quadriga's website
Notice on Quadriga’s website

It’s totally bizarre, stupid and embarrassing – and this is my story! Better told in the video up above. From hot and cold wallets to lost codes and keys, it’s all pretty crazy and at the end of they day I’m left without any of the money I invested. But what can you do… I personally know people who’ve lost a lot more than I have on other types of investments or scandals so I suppose it sometimes goes with the territory. All I can really do is try to take some lessons from the experience and keep moving forward – and hey, at least it made for a decent YouTube video! XD

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