The world’s first virtual heist was recorded when a BitCoin user found that his virtual currency was stolen, a report said.
The thief stole around 25,000 BitCoins which, if cashed-out, would amount to nearly $500,000 at the current BitCoin-US Dollar exchange rates.
BitCoin is a virtual currency which is traded via peer-to-peer software installed on the users’ computers and allows the users to transact online without using bank accounts or credit cards.
The users generate new BitCoins on their computers by performing different calculations. It is possible to buy and sell BitCoins for a standard currency at different exchange sites and can even be used to pay for goods and services.
The user, called allinvain, whose home PC was hacked, claimed that he was one of the oldest users of BitCoin and was saving up the amount to launch his own BitCoin-based eBay clone. The user also has a trusted track record in the BitCoin community.
BitCoins, though cryptographically protected, have a soft spot in the form of a wallet.dat file which is stored in the user’s computer. The wallet contains the keys that can open a full BitCoin account and resume trade operations.
Though the thief can be tracked down by his BitCoin ID virtually, the dispersed nature of the BitCoin network is developed in a way to make tracing a thief in a real world nearly impossible.
The anonymity factor of the BitCoin trading has resulted in online drug trafficking and has recently come to the notice of two US senators who asked for the network to be shutdown, the PCWorld reported.