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Shes been home more than a week and never mentioned anything to me about it.I went into her room and looked under her pillow. It wasnt there. I looked under her bed, dragging out the storage boxes to find a better opinion, using my phone for a flashlight.Carla I asked.
Nothing but egg cartons, espresso grinds, and Amazon boxes. The orange part of paper has been decomposing somewhere under a pile of crap in a Los Angeles landfill.Carla asked if losing the paper was a big deal.Not really, I said. Its just a nuisance, thats all. Ill need to send all the bitcoins from the Trezor to an online wallet, reinitialize the Trezor, generate a new word list, and place the bitcoins straight back on the Trezor.
Its 551445. The Forgetting: April 4, 2017: 7.4 BTC $8,384I plugged the Trezor into my laptop and entered 551445. Wrong PIN entered.I should have made an error entering the PIN, I believed. I attempted 551445 again, taking care to enter the digits correctly this time.Wrong PIN entered.Uh oh. I attempted a small variation: 554445Wrong PIN entered.This is ridiculous, I thought.
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Id entered it at least a dozen occasions in recent months without having to refer to this paper. OK, its likely 554145. Wrong PIN entered.I looked in the tiny monochrome display on the bitcoin wallet and noticed that a countdown timer had seemed. It was making me wait a couple of seconds before I could try another PIN.
I went to the hardware wallet manufacturers website to learn about the PIN delay and also read the terrible news: The delay doubled whenever a wrong PIN was entered. The site stated, The number of PIN entry failures is stored in the Trezors memorycard. This means that power cycling the Trezor wont make the wait time proceed to zero again.
The burglar would need to sit off his life entering the PINs. Meanwhile, you have enough time to transfer your funds into a new click site device or wallet from the paper backup. (Trezor is located in Prague, hence the stilted English.) The difficulty was, I had been the thief, trying to sneak my own bitcoins back from my Trezor.
Following my sixth incorrect PIN effort, creeping dread had escalated into heart-pounding panicI might have kissed my 7.4 bitcoins goodbye.I made a couple more guesses, and every time I failed, my sense of unreality grew in proportion to the PIN delay, that was now 2,048 seconds, or about 34 minutes.
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One hundred guesses would require more than 80 sextillion years.I broke the news to Carla. I told her I couldnt remember the PIN and that I was being punished every time that I entered an incorrect PIN. She asked me if Id saved the PIN in my 1Password application (a secure password app).
When she asked me , I didnt have an answer.I knew it'd be a mistake to waste a precious guess in my agitated condition. My mind was becoming contaminated with scrambled permutations of PINs. I went into the kitchen to chop vegetables for a curry we were making for dinner.
As I cut potatoes into cubes, I mentally shuffled around numbers as though they were Scrabble tiles on a stand. After a time, a number popped into my mind: 55144545. This was it! I walked out of the kitchen into the office. The Trezor still had a couple hundred seconds left on the countdown timer.
I tapped in 55144545. Wrong PIN entered. Please wait 4,096 seconds to continueI barely slept that night. The small shuteye I managed to get was full of nightmares involving combinations of the numbers 1, 4, and 5. It wasnt so much that the 8,000 that bothered meit was the pity I felt for being dumb enough to lose the newspaper and overlook the PIN.
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If I wasnt able to recall the PIN, the Trezor would taunt me to the rest of my life.The Hunt: April 5, 2017: 7.4 BTC $8,325That morning, bleary eyed, I started looking into ways to receive my bitcoins back that didnt involve recalling my PIN or recovery words. If Id lost my debit card PINI could contact my bank and Id eventually regain access to my funds.