If you find yourself a victim of cryptocurrency theft, odds are that you’ll never see the money again. As it turns out, Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak recently learned this lesson the hard way when he was scammed out of a few bitcoins with an estimated value of $74,000.
While speaking at Global Business Summit this week, Wozniak explained how he was tricked into selling his bitcoins to someone who bought them with a credit card. Sounds simple enough, but when the bitcoin transfer was complete, the credit card charge was promptly cancelled, effectively leaving Woz with nothing.
“The blockchain identifies who has bitcoins,” Woz said in remarks picked up by the India Times, but “that doesn’t mean there can’t be fraud though. I had seven bitcoins stolen from me through fraud. Somebody bought them from me online through a credit card and they cancelled the credit card payment. It was that easy. And it was from a stolen credit card number so you can never get it back.”
Incidentally, Woz added that he didn’t get into cryptocurrency because he viewed it as an investment vehicle, but rather because he was curious about the extent to which it could replace credit cards and cash while travelling.
Don’t feel too bad for Woz, though. He may have lost $74,000, but he reportedly invested in Bitcoin when it was trading at the $700 level and liquidated all of his holdings earlier this year. In short, Woz still came out way ahead.
All that said, Woz still remains a supporter of crypto, noting that the appeal is that it’s a currency that is “not manipulated by the governments.”
“It is mathematical,” Woz added. ” It is pure, it can’t be altered.”
But alas, it can still be stolen.