A hard drive worth millions of dollars is now believed to be sitting in a landfill in the UK, and its previous owner is trying desperately to find it.
Why is the hard drive worth so much? It contains $7.5 million in Bitcoins in a virtual wallet.
James Howells purchased the hard drive in 2009 for nearly nothing and stored his Bitcoins on it. Now the price of Bitcoins has gone up considerably, and he realizes he had thrown out a fortune when he discarded the hard drive in an IT equipment clear-out.
He isn’t the only one who discovered he was sitting on a fortune recently, as Christopher Koch of Oslo, Germany cashed out a smaller fortune himself. Apparently nobody expected Bitcoins to get that popular.
In Howells’ case, though, his efforts to find the million dollar hard drive may be in vain. The device may be sitting under several feet of garbage somewhere in a landfill the size of a football field. He has no protective equipment, and there is no guarantee that the device will be in working condition when he finds it.
His efforts may all be in vain, but James Howells is determined to know. If his search pays off and he finds the device, connects it to a computer, and successfully retrieves the Bitcoins, he will be a very wealthy man.
— Kelly Phillips Erb (@taxgirl) November 30, 2013
The chances are much more likely that he will find the hard drive crushed under a discarded couch and covered in cat litter, his Bitcoins’ value irrelevant. The coffee he spilled on the computer may have also permanently damaged the hard drive.
The recent inflation of Bitcoin exchange rates has reached an all-time high of $1000 per Bitcoin, causing many early adapters to discover they are very wealthy, sometimes after forgetting they even bought any.
Bitcoins may very well prove to be a global currency soon, with ATMs and some businesses now accepting them as a form of payment. This may be a good time to check your Bitcoin account if you’ve had them for a few years. You might find yourself potentially wealthy, much like the UK man searching for his million dollar hard drive hopes he will.