Wallet Recovery Services helps crypto investors regain access to their wallets with forgotten passwords
The firm uses proprietary software to try to figure out the wallets' passwords.
Mon, 08 Feb 2021, 05:02 am UTC
With the crypto market rally pushing Bitcoin and Ether prices to new all-time highs, one of the worst things that could happen to investors is to forget the passwords to their crypto wallets. Fortunately, there’s an expert in town whose job is to help folks regain access to their digital holdings.
Business is booming for this forgotten crypto wallet unlocking expert. “These days because of the price rise and just the increased interest, we get around 50 to 70 requests daily,” the founder of the Wallet Recovery Services, who prefers anonymity and goes by the name of “Dave Bitcoin,” told Coindesk.
Along with the other co-founders, Dave put up Wallet Recovery Services in 2013 as a hobby. The firm uses brute force attack, where it tried millions of passwords to try to unlock the crypto wallet, using proprietary software, which runs of Linux nodes on AWS.
The method works since people have the tendency to reuse their passwords for other systems. Using potential passwords suggested by owners of the locked crypto wallet, the software then uses algorithms to come up with a multitude of permutations and use them to try to access the crypto assets.
“It was an excuse for us to learn about the tech and stuff like that,” Dave explained his operations. “And then what we’ve done is, over the years, we’ve developed our own software that lets us try variations of passwords based on the customer’s guesses, and then added support for many different kinds of wallets over time.”
Some of their clients have only approached their firm years after they were locked out of the wallet. The reason for the delay is that they did not know such kind of services existed. The good thing is that they might have inadvertently HODLed and only regained access to their holdings when BTC and ETH prices are at their all-time highs.
“For many of our customers, whether it’s a few ether or .05 bitcoin, this amount of money could make a big difference in someone’s life,” Dave added. “So we put a fair amount of effort into all wallets, regardless of their size.”
However, Dave cannot give a hundred percent guarantee that their software could unlock a crypto wallet whose password was forgotten by its owner. In fact, he warned that those who assure wallet holders that they can get their funds back might be scammers.
“Historically, our success rate is about 35%,” Dave explained. “So there’s a 65% chance we won’t get anything out of the wallets that we work on, which we spend time and resources on.”
Chainalysis estimates that around 20 percent of the existing 18.5 million Bitcoin are from crypto wallets with lost passwords, according to the New York Times. At current prices, this means that around $140 billion in BTC can’t be accessed by their respective owners worldwide.
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