Peter Schiff, CEO of Euro Pacific Capital, has solved the mystery of his lost Bitcoin. After struggling to access his wallet, he blamed the Bitcoin network for failing him. However, he has admitted that he never took care of his seed phrase—the Bitcoin equivalent of a password.
In a recent tweet, Schiff said that he never knew the (literal) password to his Bitcoin wallet, and failed to write down his recovery seed phrase.
"My Bitcoin mystery is solved. I mistook my pin for my password. When Blockchain updated their app I got logged out. I tired [tried] logging back in using my pin, which was the only "password" I had ever known or used. I also never had a copy of my seed phrase. Honest but costly mistake!" said Shiff.
Erik Voorhees, CEO at ShapeShift, explained that he helped Shiff set up his wallet back in 2018. He claimed that Schiff failed to properly secure his wallet.
"Here's what happened: after debate in 2018, we went to dinner. Peter had never used bitcoin before (!) I helped him set up wallet on his phone (Edge or BRD?), told him to secure it if he ever held significant value on it, gave him $50. He forgot [password], and never recorded phrase," Voorhees tweeted.
Not your keys, not your coins
So, it looks like Shiff failed to follow one of the key Bitcoin mantras: Not your keys, not your coins. The idea being that if you're not the person with access to your private keys (or seed phrase) then you aren't in control of your Bitcoin. To put it another way, as long as you keep your keys safe, you can use Bitcoin.
But, while many are criticizing Shiff for his mistake, Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin says the crypto community needs to blame itself.
"Disappointed at people replying to this with "crypto is what it is, it's your job to be super-careful and write down backup seeds in three places". We can and should create better wallet tech to make security easier," he wrote.
Despite acknowledging his own role in the proceedings, Schiff continued to criticize Bitcoin, calling it "intrinsically worthless."
Crypto Youtuber "The Moon" commented on his tweet, saying, "If I forget my password to Facebook, does that mean Facebook doesn't work??"
Despite the admission, Schiff went right back to bashing Bitcoin just hours later. "A lot of people are making fun of me for confusing my pin with my password. I made a mistake and it cost me my Bitcoin. But confusing Bitcoin for money is a much larger mistake and those who are making it will lose far more than I did!" he said.
But if Bitcoin has no value, then it can't have cost him anything at all.