Bitcoin question (How did FBI recover some pipeline ransom)

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I Shrugged
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Bitcoin question (How did FBI recover some pipeline ransom)

Post by I Shrugged » Sat Jan 08, 2022 8:19 am

Remember when the Colonial Pipeline or some other important company paid a ransom in Bitcoin, and soon it was announced that the FBI or some other agency got a lot of it back?

How did they do that? Isn’t Bitcoin impenetrable?
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Re: Bitcoin question

Post by boglerdude » Sat Jan 08, 2022 11:30 pm

https://old.reddit.com/r/BitcoinBeginne ... he_fbi_do/

Crypto's best use case is still crime.
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Re: Bitcoin question (How did FBI recover some pipeline ransom)

Post by var » Mon Jan 10, 2022 5:34 pm

I Shrugged wrote:
Sat Jan 08, 2022 8:19 am
Remember when the Colonial Pipeline or some other important company paid a ransom in Bitcoin, and soon it was announced that the FBI or some other agency got a lot of it back?

How did they do that? Isn’t Bitcoin impenetrable?
This is mis-information all BTC transactions are visible to anyone on the blockchain. The attackers should have taken the BTC and exchanged it to monero or some other tokens on various DEXs.

THE BTC community will usually band together and once the address is known will lockout the wallet address so you can never really cash out the stolen bitcoin.
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Re: Bitcoin question (How did FBI recover some pipeline ransom)

Post by Xan » Mon Jan 10, 2022 6:09 pm

var wrote:
Mon Jan 10, 2022 5:34 pm
This is mis-information all BTC transactions are visible to anyone on the blockchain.
I make this point every time somebody extols the privacy benefits of Bitcoin. Literally all your transactions are recorded permanently, publicly, and for all time. That's the opposite of "privacy" in every way.
var wrote:
Mon Jan 10, 2022 5:34 pm
THE BTC community will usually band together and once the address is known will lockout the wallet address so you can never really cash out the stolen bitcoin.
Wait, what? Bitcoins aren't fungible? Some cabal (er, "community") could decree that my ersatz money is now worthless?
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Re: Bitcoin question (How did FBI recover some pipeline ransom)

Post by I Shrugged » Mon Jan 10, 2022 6:38 pm

Actually the DOJ got the private key to the wallet, during a raid on some server.
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Re: Bitcoin question (How did FBI recover some pipeline ransom)

Post by seajay » Fri Jan 14, 2022 3:52 am

Xan wrote:
Mon Jan 10, 2022 6:09 pm
var wrote:
Mon Jan 10, 2022 5:34 pm
This is mis-information all BTC transactions are visible to anyone on the blockchain.
I make this point every time somebody extols the privacy benefits of Bitcoin. Literally all your transactions are recorded permanently, publicly, and for all time. That's the opposite of "privacy" in every way.
Neither do bitcoins reside within wallets, they're just recorded in the blockchain. Proliferation of loggers to capture private keys is big-business and knowing the private key is ownership of the associated Btc's. Hacking a central Windows/Linux/whatever repository patch that installs a private key logger is a low risk high reward attack. The only really safe system is one that has had the code/system upon which is it based fully audited and verified as clean, that has never been attached to the internet and that is locked away in a secure vault. Conflicting with that is a system that has/is connected to the internet is generally required in order to generate keys/make transactions.

Many would find securing a physical piece of gold a lot easier and more obvious than that of securing Btc ownership. State sponsored cyber warfare attacks that redirect large amounts of bitcoins could be like having the ability to empty Fort Knox at the press of a button and win the war relatively quickly. In contrast with physical gold you actually have to invade and secure Fort Knox or wherever the gold might have been moved.
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Re: Bitcoin question (How did FBI recover some pipeline ransom)

Post by var » Sun Jan 16, 2022 7:42 pm

I Shrugged wrote:
Mon Jan 10, 2022 6:38 pm
Actually the DOJ got the private key to the wallet, during a raid on some server.
True. the hackers left the key on the cloud server that they used to attack. Sloppy.

Just because it is written on the blockchain. You still need keys to access the funds.

I used to be a gold bug. However, upon further detailed research is just far easier to secure and own BTC if you do it properly.

The slippage trading Gold Eagle is a lot more than trading BTC.
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Re: Bitcoin question (How did FBI recover some pipeline ransom)

Post by bitcoininthevp » Thu Feb 03, 2022 8:13 am

Xan wrote:
Mon Jan 10, 2022 6:09 pm
I make this point every time somebody extols the privacy benefits of Bitcoin. Literally all your transactions are recorded permanently, publicly, and for all time. That's the opposite of "privacy" in every way.
Its really a spectrum of potential privacy. I could put my name and address in a bitcoin transaction and really have zero privacy. I could buy coins on coinbase and send to my wallet and have a little above zero privacy. Or I can acquire bitcoin privately and then transact with it privately and have "a lot" of privacy.
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Re: Bitcoin question (How did FBI recover some pipeline ransom)

Post by ppnewbie » Sun Feb 06, 2022 8:46 pm

bitcoininthevp wrote:
Thu Feb 03, 2022 8:13 am
Xan wrote:
Mon Jan 10, 2022 6:09 pm
I make this point every time somebody extols the privacy benefits of Bitcoin. Literally all your transactions are recorded permanently, publicly, and for all time. That's the opposite of "privacy" in every way.
Its really a spectrum of potential privacy. I could put my name and address in a bitcoin transaction and really have zero privacy. I could buy coins on coinbase and send to my wallet and have a little above zero privacy. Or I can acquire bitcoin privately and then transact with it privately and have "a lot" of privacy.
I've here that coinbase keeps track of the BTC that traverse their platform and "do something" if they decide they dont like a transaction that you may be very loosely connected to, they may lock you out of coinbase or freeze you account. When I say loosely, I mean you exchanged a few sats for a something and those were used a few steps down the line to buy something illegal. Its like being held accountable for the traces of cocaine on your dollar bill, forever.

Anyway, its just what I have heard.
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Re: Bitcoin question (How did FBI recover some pipeline ransom)

Post by Arthur Boe Nansa » Wed Feb 09, 2022 6:03 am

bitcoininthevp wrote:
Thu Feb 03, 2022 8:13 am
Xan wrote:
Mon Jan 10, 2022 6:09 pm
I make this point every time somebody extols the privacy benefits of Bitcoin. Literally all your transactions are recorded permanently, publicly, and for all time. That's the opposite of "privacy" in every way.
Its really a spectrum of potential privacy. I could put my name and address in a bitcoin transaction and really have zero privacy. I could buy coins on coinbase and send to my wallet and have a little above zero privacy. Or I can acquire bitcoin privately and then transact with it privately and have "a lot" of privacy.
This can be said about anything. The fact of the matter is that amongst "privacy oriented cryptos", when considering the privacy preserving tech inherent in the protocol or offered as additional functionality, Bitcoin (BTC) is way lower down on the list. A privacy coin it is not.
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Re: Bitcoin question (How did FBI recover some pipeline ransom)

Post by bitcoininthevp » Wed Feb 09, 2022 1:39 pm

Arthur Boe Nansa wrote:
Wed Feb 09, 2022 6:03 am
bitcoininthevp wrote:
Thu Feb 03, 2022 8:13 am
Xan wrote:
Mon Jan 10, 2022 6:09 pm
I make this point every time somebody extols the privacy benefits of Bitcoin. Literally all your transactions are recorded permanently, publicly, and for all time. That's the opposite of "privacy" in every way.
Its really a spectrum of potential privacy. I could put my name and address in a bitcoin transaction and really have zero privacy. I could buy coins on coinbase and send to my wallet and have a little above zero privacy. Or I can acquire bitcoin privately and then transact with it privately and have "a lot" of privacy.
This can be said about anything. The fact of the matter is that amongst "privacy oriented cryptos", when considering the privacy preserving tech inherent in the protocol or offered as additional functionality, Bitcoin (BTC) is way lower down on the list. A privacy coin it is not.
"This can be said about anything" - not really. It cant be said about the vast majority of financial transactions like buying stock, sending a wire transfer, cashing a check, etc.

Agreed on your point about Bitcoin privacy/fungibility "out of the box" not being strong.
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Re: Bitcoin question (How did FBI recover some pipeline ransom)

Post by bitcoininthevp » Wed Feb 09, 2022 1:42 pm

ppnewbie wrote:
Sun Feb 06, 2022 8:46 pm
I've here that coinbase keeps track of the BTC that traverse their platform and "do something" if they decide they dont like a transaction that you may be very loosely connected to, they may lock you out of coinbase or freeze you account. When I say loosely, I mean you exchanged a few sats for a something and those were used a few steps down the line to buy something illegal. Its like being held accountable for the traces of cocaine on your dollar bill, forever.

Anyway, its just what I have heard.
Yes. I believe nearly all exchanges or fiat on/off ramps use the company "chainalysis" or similar ones. In order to opt-in for their analysis of the exchange's transactions (to help with compliance), the exchanges also have to hand over all of their transaction data to chainalysis as part of the deal.
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Re: Bitcoin question (How did FBI recover some pipeline ransom)

Post by I Shrugged » Wed Feb 09, 2022 3:46 pm

A lot of tracking going on with regards to the Bitcoin Bonnie & Crypto Clyde. Despite their use of the dark web etc.

https://finance.yahoo.com/news/4-u-accu ... 54705.html
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Re: Bitcoin question (How did FBI recover some pipeline ransom)

Post by Arthur Boe Nansa » Wed Feb 09, 2022 4:08 pm

bitcoininthevp wrote:
Wed Feb 09, 2022 1:39 pm
"This can be said about anything" - not really. It cant be said about the vast majority of financial transactions like buying stock, sending a wire transfer, cashing a check, etc.

Agreed on your point about Bitcoin privacy/fungibility "out of the box" not being strong.
Well sure, but I hope that would be obvious to anyone who does even the most basic of research. To put it crudely, "vanilla PoW" (Bitcoin) is one step above putting a "Hi, my name is..." sticker on your storage (wallet). Swiss banks in the 80's had roughly the same amount of privacy, if not more.

In a data economy saying "better than most modern financial transactions" is not much. Anything that even brings "private" into the conversation has to pass that filter.

All IMO, of course...
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Re: Bitcoin question (How did FBI recover some pipeline ransom)

Post by bitcoininthevp » Wed Feb 09, 2022 6:42 pm

I Shrugged wrote:
Wed Feb 09, 2022 3:46 pm
A lot of tracking going on with regards to the Bitcoin Bonnie & Crypto Clyde. Despite their use of the dark web etc.

https://finance.yahoo.com/news/4-u-accu ... 54705.html
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Re: Bitcoin question (How did FBI recover some pipeline ransom)

Post by bitcoininthevp » Wed Feb 09, 2022 6:49 pm

Arthur Boe Nansa wrote:
Wed Feb 09, 2022 4:08 pm
To put it crudely, "vanilla PoW" (Bitcoin) is one step above putting a "Hi, my name is..." sticker on your storage (wallet). Swiss banks in the 80's had roughly the same amount of privacy, if not more.

In a data economy saying "better than most modern financial transactions" is not much. Anything that even brings "private" into the conversation has to pass that filter.
Its really nothing to do with proof of work lacking privacy. Monero uses pow for example and is much more private.

Privacy (in Bitcoin) is really all about how you use Bitcoin. It can be very private or it can be very public. The number and usability of the privacy tools available are increasing. Fungibility is important in a money and I hope for many more improvements here.
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Re: Bitcoin question (How did FBI recover some pipeline ransom)

Post by Arthur Boe Nansa » Thu Feb 10, 2022 3:41 am

bitcoininthevp wrote:
Wed Feb 09, 2022 6:49 pm
Its really nothing to do with proof of work lacking privacy. Monero uses pow for example and is much more private.

Privacy (in Bitcoin) is really all about how you use Bitcoin. It can be very private or it can be very public. The number and usability of the privacy tools available are increasing. Fungibility is important in a money and I hope for many more improvements here.
Yup, the word vanilla wasn't there by accident. I'm trying to highlight that just saying "blockchain", "digital", and "cryptography" do not make something inherently private. Indeed privacy tools are increasing in many projects. Since you mentioned it, if people are interested in private money they should check out Monero. Everything has its pros and cons, differences in design and implementation are not always so trivial.
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Re: Bitcoin question (How did FBI recover some pipeline ransom)

Post by Don » Thu Feb 10, 2022 11:05 am

I Shrugged wrote:
Mon Jan 10, 2022 6:38 pm
Actually the DOJ got the private key to the wallet, during a raid on some server.
Can they help me recover my long lost private key too? I'll give them half.
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