An anonymous Bitcoin investor by the name “1400BitcoinStolen” claimed on Sunday that he lost 1400 BTC after “foolishly” installing an old version of the popular Electrum wallet, but turned out to be a phishing scam.
Explaining the unfortunate incident, the victim said he had not been able to access the funds since 2017. After setting up the wallet and attempted to transfer 1 BTC, he received a pop-up message asking him to update his security before he can hat transfer the fund.
But unknown to him, it was a trap – a phishing attempt. The victim said he installed the update, and all his funds were automatically transferred to the hackers’ wallet address, making the scammers $16 million richer.
Can The Funds Be Recovered?
For one thing, Bitcoin transactions are irreversible: the receiving party can only refund it. Nonetheless, 1400BitcoinStolen said he has contacted blockchain analytic company Coinfirm and waiting for a response.
Coinfirm claims it helps scam victims reclaim their cryptocurrencies, especially Bitcoin and Ethereum. The company said on its website that after assessing the information provided by victims, an investigation would be conducted once the case is approved and the stolen funds would be returned to the victim’s wallet.
243 BTC Lost In 2018
Sadly, this is not the only user who has fallen victim to this popular but painful mistake. Anyone who installs the security update would lose their cryptocurrency since updating the wallet means automatically giving hackers access to the funds.
Earlier this year, the case of Eric Savics, the host of the Protocol Podcats went viral as he shared how he lost his supposed life savings in a similar fashion.
Electrum is an early Bitcoin wallet launched in 2011 with multiple updates released so far. Sadly, hackers leverage the wallet’s previous versions to defraud unsuspecting users every time a new one is released.
Back in 2018, the Bitcoin wallet suffered a major phishing attack that led to the loss of over 243 BTC, worth almost $1 million at that time. The hackers created multiple malicious servers, asking users to install the latest security update.