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Author Topic: Trust No One  (Read 160516 times)
chindit
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January 01, 2014, 03:38:45 AM
 #2201

Seriously. Don't trust the exchanges, don't trust online wallet services, don't trust your anti-virus software, and don't trust anybody online.

If you absolutely must trust someone with your bitcoins, for the love, choose carefully!

  • Do you know their full name?
  • Do you know where they are located?
  • Have they demonstrated trustworthiness in the past?
  • Are they asking you to trust them? (red flag)
  • Do they have insurance?

Insurance? Impossible, you say. Not so!

When I needed people to trust me to hold bitcoins for a contest, I deposited 50 bitcoins as a bond with a well-respected forum member, so that even if I did something stupid and lost people's money, they would still be reimbursed. You can read about it here: http://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=10008.0

Consider carefully who you will trust. With bitcoins, elaborate scams may be profitable. For instance, someone may develop trust for their user name over many months with small transactions on this forum, then take advantage of that trust to make off with a lot of money. Such a scam would only be worth doing on this forum. No other forum in the world would be worth the effort.

If you want someone to hold your bitcoins for you, there are NO online services that have the transparency and security to make me comfortable using them for storing bitcoins for more than a short time in small amounts. The only way to do it is like I did - choose someone whom you believe to be trustworthy, and approach them. If they approach you, or in any way say or insinuate that they are a trustworthy person to hold your coins, STAY AWAY.

If you are thinking that I might not be trustworthy, since I am writing this post about the issue, you are approaching the appropriate level of paranoia.

If you want to store your bitcoins with maximum security, there are lots of resources about how to do it, such as this: https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Securing_your_wallet

Here's my summary:

1. Put all your coins in a new wallet that has never connected to the network
2. Encrypt that wallet with the maximum security you can find, using the most secure password you can keep track of
3. Delete the plaintext wallet, and distribute the encrypted wallet to every piece of physical media you own, store it online, and send it to several people you trust

Don't think you can generate and remember a secure enough password? Create a super-long password, and store clues to help you remember it. For instance, your password clue file might say:

My standard password + My throwaway password (backwards, all caps) + &#$%@ + First two sentences of first paragraph of page 19 of my favorite book (include all capitalization and punctuation) + My wife's mother's middle name + My son's favorite superhero + My favorite number times 8734 + food my wife hates (backwards, all caps) + 9-digit number stored with my paper will + 10-character password stored in my safety deposit box + . . . .

You can go on in this way to create as long a password as you want. Store this password clue file with your encrypted wallet, and optionally encrypt both with a simple standard password to keep out snoopers.

In this way, not only can you recover your coins from your "savings account" at a later date, if you get hit by a chicken truck tomorrow and die, your loved ones can probably piece together your password and recover the coins too (better make sure you trust them, and that between them they have or can get the answers to those clues).

I recommend that you practice your wallet encryption and recovery a few times with a small number of coins, until you are very comfortable with the process before you try it with the bulk of your savings.

And remember, this is how most bitcoins services get started:

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-lgm4poF3JWE/TgsHwby-BlI/AAAAAAAADwQ/twan94HT6p4/020.jpg

Comic from: http://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=13903.0
We are really pissing the bankers off. (rothschild, rockerfckrs, bush,  morgans etc.). Do you really think that they will give up their unearned paradise without a fight? They "own" the banks, who "own" the politicians who control your culture & your existence. Cryptocoin is a threat to them but they are laughing 'cos they have the n.s.a, mi5 & 6 introducing new cryptocoins to confuse & confound the movement! It's not just a few greedy geeks who are introducing dogshitcoin , catshit coin & gulliblecoin. "No". It's the very people who we are trying to avoid. Please beware of new cryptocoins they are a "trap" because these sick'os will not allow the real ones to succeed. Your community is under attack!!!! Luv U guys....Happy new year. !
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seftonde
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January 10, 2014, 04:10:40 AM
 #2202

dacoinminster:

I read your original post on paranoia.  Although you wrote it a few years ago it is wonderful.  I am the head of information security for a major facility and I wish I could ingrain some of your thoughts in my user community!  Very well done, sir (or madam).

I've been messing with computers, programming, information security and such since the last 70's.  I've just recently gotten into the crypto world after casually following bitcoin for the past few years (and I wish I'd started mining it back a few years ago!).  I turned my macbook pro into an impromptu miner (CPU) and picked up a few litecoin and dogecoin.  I got worried about my CPU temps peaking out at 100 C, especially since this is my primary tool for my hobby of publishing children's iOS software, which I 've been doing since the iPhone was released.  I did buy four bitcoin at $220 USD in November 2013 and am pleased at myself given the current price.  Smiley

So, off to the local store I headed, bought the cheapest windows tower I could find, a beefed up power supply, a high end video card and now I'm at 400 kHz, headed to 1Mhs hopefully when my next card comes in and I'm hooked!

Trying to learn as much as I can about this field, and realizing I may be profiting in the process (but not counting on that).

Looking forward to learning and having fun!

Daniel

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January 11, 2014, 01:17:33 AM
 #2203

Thanks for the great info.

How do you guys feel about group buys here in the forums ?
I don't feel comfortable sending a bitcoin to a person i don't know although it seems legit and .35 btc for 30 ghash seems like a good deal
GetVisaCoin
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January 11, 2014, 01:59:21 AM
 #2204

Yes, trust no one! Look at all the scams going on at the moment. It's very damaging to the crypto movement to have all this scamming going on. I plan to offer a bounty to catch Visacoin. If he gets away with his scam there will be more. If he is caught and suffers the consequences of his actions, then the community will have sent a message.

[GVC]GetVisaCoin :: Born for Retribution--Send a message to scammers--You will be exposed and punished!!!
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January 13, 2014, 04:56:03 PM
 #2205

Don't even trust your parents, I mean, are they really your parents?
suzannekennedy
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January 15, 2014, 07:54:11 PM
 #2206

Hi all, maybe I'm a little late into this thread. I've read a good deal of it, but not all 113 pages of it. Just wanted to insert an idea that I had while reading.

In building trust when it comes to transactions between unknown people.

Why do we need to trust someone? Couldn't there be a piece of software that could handle it for us?

Say I want to trade my 1 BTC for 2,000,000 DOGE to PERSONX.
There could be software that handles the transaction, the 2 of us first allocate what the overall transaction will be (my 1 BTC for PERSONX's 2,000,000 DOGE).
Then we agree on our RISK FACTOR, say .01 BTC , then the program will make many small transactions over the next 24 hours. So, instead of making 1 transaction of 1 BTC for 2,000,000 DOGE it makes 100 transactions over a longer period (as fast as it can be verified, depending on the volume and the risk factor) of .01 BTC for 20,000 DOGE.

The program would choose one person on the first transaction to go first, but it would take turns making each person go first every other micro-transaction. If the first transaction (or any subsequent transaction) never happens then the program stops any further transactions.

People can trade at whatever RISK FACTOR they are comfortable with, knowing that the most they can lose is the RISK FACTOR that they choose. You could make a high volume transaction with a very low risk, but the downside would be that the transaction would take a little longer.

Of course this brings up the issue of trusting the program itself, but if the source code is available I don't see any reason to trust it any less than any other wallet software.
gigalink
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January 16, 2014, 07:59:35 PM
 #2207

Hi bitcoiners -- first poster here.

Since we're talking trust here, I wanted to recount my brief experience purchasing BTC via USD through Localbitcoins.com about a week ago (my first foray into the currency).  I found a seller with a stellar reputation, did a cash deposit to their bank account, and, *presto*, the Localbitcoins escrow system worked flawlessly!  This seemed so much easier and safer than doing an in-person transaction, which some people may have had issues with (based upon what I've read in other forums).  I was not unhappy to pay their 1% fee for this service.

I'm not here to plug the site, only to let people know that I had a good experience.  YMMV, of course.

Cheerio.
Bitech
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January 18, 2014, 02:41:31 AM
 #2208

Transactions should be divided up into small increments to reduce the risk of losing money.

Say I wanted to trade in $50 worth of BTC for $50, but instead of exchanging it all at once I would do it in 10 small transactions of $5 each. So one by one I make the $5 exchanges, check to see if a transaction is completed, then I move on to the next $5, and then the next until I exchanged all $50 worth of BTC.

That way if the service ends up scamming me I would only lose $5 worth of BTC instead of all $50 of it, then I would mark the service as untrustworthy and take the $45 left of BTC I have left and try another service.

If this is possible to do within a reasonable amount of time then it's a good way to risk only a fraction of the amount you're exchanging.
MaTeZZ
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January 20, 2014, 05:37:56 AM
 #2209

Well talking trust and Mt. Gox
On September 2013 I have initiated a withdrawal of $400 to my bank account via wire transfer.

Its January 2014 and still no $$.... Angry

Always the same answer from Mt. Gox support:

Quote
James Support, Oct 25 16:12 (JST):

Hello,

Thank you for the email. Due to volumes of withdrawals and backlogs there are delay in processing the withdrawals. We are working to clear the backlogs. Sorry for the inconvenience caused. We would not be able to provide ETA at the moment.

We would sure track on the withdrawal and update you once processed. We appreciate your patience and understanding till then.

Best regards,

Mt.Gox Team

conarchi
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January 20, 2014, 06:17:58 AM
 #2210

Well talking trust and Mt. Gox
On September 2013 I have initiated a withdrawal of $400 to my bank account via wire transfer.

Its January 2014 and still no $$.... Angry

Always the same answer from Mt. Gox support:

Quote
James Support, Oct 25 16:12 (JST):

Hello,

Thank you for the email. Due to volumes of withdrawals and backlogs there are delay in processing the withdrawals. We are working to clear the backlogs. Sorry for the inconvenience caused. We would not be able to provide ETA at the moment.

We would sure track on the withdrawal and update you once processed. We appreciate your patience and understanding till then.

Best regards,

Mt.Gox Team



I don't think I could ever trust Mt Gox.
All I ever hear is bad stories about how people can't get their money out.
I much prefer to trade using BTC-E & Coinjar
QuantumMiner
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February 22, 2014, 04:46:06 AM
 #2211

summing up latest with n00b terms:

localbitcoins GOOD
mtgox BAD

Anything else apart from the crucial info on page 1 ? Smiley
borer
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February 22, 2014, 04:54:02 AM
 #2212

yep trust no one
theta
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February 25, 2014, 12:07:31 PM
 #2213

Hi all, maybe I'm a little late into this thread. I've read a good deal of it, but not all 113 pages of it. Just wanted to insert an idea that I had while reading.

In building trust when it comes to transactions between unknown people.

Why do we need to trust someone? Couldn't there be a piece of software that could handle it for us?

Say I want to trade my 1 BTC for 2,000,000 DOGE to PERSONX.
There could be software that handles the transaction, the 2 of us first allocate what the overall transaction will be (my 1 BTC for PERSONX's 2,000,000 DOGE).
Then we agree on our RISK FACTOR, say .01 BTC , then the program will make many small transactions over the next 24 hours. So, instead of making 1 transaction of 1 BTC for 2,000,000 DOGE it makes 100 transactions over a longer period (as fast as it can be verified, depending on the volume and the risk factor) of .01 BTC for 20,000 DOGE.

The program would choose one person on the first transaction to go first, but it would take turns making each person go first every other micro-transaction. If the first transaction (or any subsequent transaction) never happens then the program stops any further transactions.

People can trade at whatever RISK FACTOR they are comfortable with, knowing that the most they can lose is the RISK FACTOR that they choose. You could make a high volume transaction with a very low risk, but the downside would be that the transaction would take a little longer.

Of course this brings up the issue of trusting the program itself, but if the source code is available I don't see any reason to trust it any less than any other wallet software.

If both parties send the funds to the program, they already implicitly trust it (or its owner), hence the microtransactions are redundant (the program already has access to all the funds).
khalilhimura
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March 09, 2014, 05:24:10 PM
 #2214

If you are thinking that I might not be trustworthy, since I am writing this post about the issue, you are approaching the appropriate level of paranoia.

Love your statement. Being a total newbie, this guideline validates my worry Smiley am currently setting up my cold storage wallet as I type this.


LOL! Not looking down on others, but some of the sites/exchanges that I've seen this past week really looks like its being built & run by "babies". Gotta look the part if you intend to run a long lasting business. First impression counts.
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March 09, 2014, 05:30:56 PM
 #2215

Hi bitcoiners -- first poster here.

Since we're talking trust here, I wanted to recount my brief experience purchasing BTC via USD through Localbitcoins.com about a week ago (my first foray into the currency).  I found a seller with a stellar reputation, did a cash deposit to their bank account, and, *presto*, the Localbitcoins escrow system worked flawlessly!  This seemed so much easier and safer than doing an in-person transaction, which some people may have had issues with (based upon what I've read in other forums).  I was not unhappy to pay their 1% fee for this service.

I'm not here to plug the site, only to let people know that I had a good experience.  YMMV, of course.

Cheerio.

Agree 100% Got my first fraction of BTC through a local seller via localbitcoins.com

Followed the service step-by-step (i.e. instructions were clear & at the right place). Worked flawlessly for me Smiley
bitManXD
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March 21, 2014, 02:15:17 AM
 #2216

Seriously. Don't trust the exchanges, don't trust online wallet services, don't trust your anti-virus software, and don't trust anybody online.

If you absolutely must trust someone with your bitcoins, for the love, choose carefully!

  • Do you know their full name?
  • Do you know where they are located?
  • Have they demonstrated trustworthiness in the past?
  • Are they asking you to trust them? (red flag)
  • Do they have insurance?

Insurance? Impossible, you say. Not so!

When I needed people to trust me to hold bitcoins for a contest, I deposited 50 bitcoins as a bond with a well-respected forum member, so that even if I did something stupid and lost people's money, they would still be reimbursed. You can read about it here: http://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=10008.0

Consider carefully who you will trust. With bitcoins, elaborate scams may be profitable. For instance, someone may develop trust for their user name over many months with small transactions on this forum, then take advantage of that trust to make off with a lot of money. Such a scam would only be worth doing on this forum. No other forum in the world would be worth the effort.

If you want someone to hold your bitcoins for you, there are NO online services that have the transparency and security to make me comfortable using them for storing bitcoins for more than a short time in small amounts. The only way to do it is like I did - choose someone whom you believe to be trustworthy, and approach them. If they approach you, or in any way say or insinuate that they are a trustworthy person to hold your coins, STAY AWAY.

If you are thinking that I might not be trustworthy, since I am writing this post about the issue, you are approaching the appropriate level of paranoia.

If you want to store your bitcoins with maximum security, there are lots of resources about how to do it, such as this: https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Securing_your_wallet

Here's my summary:

1. Put all your coins in a new wallet that has never connected to the network
2. Encrypt that wallet with the maximum security you can find, using the most secure password you can keep track of
3. Delete the plaintext wallet, and distribute the encrypted wallet to every piece of physical media you own, store it online, and send it to several people you trust

Don't think you can generate and remember a secure enough password? Create a super-long password, and store clues to help you remember it. For instance, your password clue file might say:

My standard password + My throwaway password (backwards, all caps) + &#$%@ + First two sentences of first paragraph of page 19 of my favorite book (include all capitalization and punctuation) + My wife's mother's middle name + My son's favorite superhero + My favorite number times 8734 + food my wife hates (backwards, all caps) + 9-digit number stored with my paper will + 10-character password stored in my safety deposit box + . . . .

You can go on in this way to create as long a password as you want. Store this password clue file with your encrypted wallet, and optionally encrypt both with a simple standard password to keep out snoopers.

In this way, not only can you recover your coins from your "savings account" at a later date, if you get hit by a chicken truck tomorrow and die, your loved ones can probably piece together your password and recover the coins too (better make sure you trust them, and that between them they have or can get the answers to those clues).

I recommend that you practice your wallet encryption and recovery a few times with a small number of coins, until you are very comfortable with the process before you try it with the bulk of your savings.

And remember, this is how most bitcoins services get started:

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-lgm4poF3JWE/TgsHwby-BlI/AAAAAAAADwQ/twan94HT6p4/020.jpg

Comic from: http://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=13903.0


I think this is just overkill. Being *really* careful with your wallet might be sufficient in most cases.
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March 22, 2014, 06:59:25 AM
 #2217

i trust only my walled secured by truecrypt

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June 08, 2014, 11:57:01 PM
 #2218

What's the point of bitcoin if you have to be so paranoid?

I put this post in the Newbies area for a reason Smiley

I believe that bitcoin will someday be orders of magnitude more secure (and more valuable). If you buy bitcoins now, you are an early adopter getting in while prices are cheap and betting that security and utility will improve.

In the meantime, yes, you must be absurdly paranoid. These websites cannot be trusted any more than you absolutely have to. To actually hold onto your coins long enough for your investment to pay off, you need to push the paranoia up to the tinfoil-hat level. This is the price of being an early bitcoin adopter.
it has definitely become more valuable, but secure not so much IMHO ... it's still very easy for someone who is too trusting to be scammed by someone who is too good at doing so.

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Harley997
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June 09, 2014, 04:41:51 PM
 #2219

Bitcoin is designed to be a trust-less system.

Even if you know someone's identity it would be very difficult to enforce any agreement that you have with them.

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April 07, 2016, 03:14:41 PM
 #2220

You have to wonder, if mass adoption of bitcoin is even possible with this level of paranoia. It takes a lot of reading just to even get started using bitcoin.
There's got to be an easier way.
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