Letter #11: Bitcoin and the FBI Hack That Never Was
Bitcoin is highly regarded for the fact that it hasn’t been hacked once in the more than 12 years since the genesis block on the Bitcoin network was mined. For all intents and purposes, Bitcoin stored on the network is safe as long as you protect the private key that secures your Bitcoin wallet.
You can imagine the surprise of many in the community when several media outlets reported today that the FBI had seized around sixty-four Bitcoin allegedly included as part of the payment made to a hacker group in connection with the Colonial Pipeline ransomware attack in May 2021. Missing from their news releases were details on how exactly the FBI had managed to access the Bitcoin, leading many new participants in the Bitcoin space to wonder if the FBI had somehow managed to hack what has up to this point been an un-hackable network.
While the FBI almost assuredly has teams of top tier hackers in its ranks, the idea that the FBI could infiltrate the Bitcoin network was laughable from the start, and seems to have been proven wrong by the FBI’s own press release (more on that below).