Satoshi Nakamoto’s account hacked?

Image: Ariel Zambelich/WIRED. Coin design: Gail Anderson + Joe Newton

Image: Ariel Zambelich/WIRED. Coin design: Gail Anderson + Joe Newton

It appears that Satoshi Nakamoto’s GMX email account, which he originally used to announce Bitcoin in the P2P Foundation’s Ning forum, has been hacked. The hacker has used the account to post a warning to Satoshi in our forum. The following article, written by Robert McMillan, was originally published at Wired.com.

“Dear Satoshi. Your dox, passwords and IP addresses are being sold on the darknet. Apparently you didn’t configure Tor properly and your IP leaked when you used your email account sometime in 2010. You are not safe. You need to get out of where you are as soon as possible before these people harm you. Thank you for inventing Bitcoin.”


Someone has taken over the email account belonging to bitcoin’s secretive creator, Satoshi Nakamoto, saying he will sell Nakamoto’s secrets for money.

The hacker, who told WIRED his name is “Jeffrey,” claims to have also obtained information on Nakamoto that could be used to unmask his identity. Jeffrey didn’t tell us much, but when we asked him how he managed to take control over the [email protected] email address that Nakamoto had used for some of his correspondence, he wrote: “The fool used a primary gmx under his full name and had aliases set up underneath it. He’s also alive.”

In a Pastebin post, Jeffrey said he will release Satoshi’s secrets if someone pays 25 bitcoins—about $12,000 to his bitcoin address. He says he has email messages dating back to 2011. A programmer (or group of programmers) going by the name Satoshi Nakamoto released the open source software that drives the bitcoin digital currency in 2009. Ever since, as has bitcoin expanded into a worldwide phenomenon, people have tried to unmask its creator, but his true identity has never been sufficiently proven.

Jeffrey wouldn’t say how he took over Nakamoto’s account, and he didn’t respond to many of our questions. But it looks like he leveraged the gmx.com address to take over other Nakamoto accounts. One was used Monday to post a message to the P2P Foundation website. Another to deface an old bitcoin developer page on the Sourceforge open-source coding site.

In his P2P Foundation message, Jeffrey claimed that information about Nakamoto was already being sold online. “Apparently, you didn’t configure Tor properly and your IP leaked when you used your email account sometime in 2010. You are not safe. You need to get out of where you are as soon as possible before these people harm you.”

But Jeffrey didn’t provide any evidence to substantiate this claims. And it’s not clear what information he really has on bitcoin’s creator.

Satoshi Nakamoto disappeared from the public eye back in 2010, so it’s possible that after a few years of disuse, the webmail provider that runs Nakamoto’s account, GMX.com, simply allowed somebody new to register the [email protected] address. Based in the U.K., GMX.com couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.

A more intriguing possibility, however, is that the account was hacked. If that’s true, Jeffrey could have access to a treasure trove of private Satoshi Nakamoto emails. And that information could help unmask Nakamoto’s true identity.

Michael Marquardt, the head administrator of the Bitcointalk.org discussion forum, says that Jeffrey sent him an excerpt of an email he’d sent to Nakamoto back in March of this year. “So either the email account was compromised since March,” he says, “or the attacker gained access to old emails when he compromised the account.”

“I’m pretty sure,” Marquardt says, “that this is just some troll in it for the laughs.”

Andy Greenberg contributed to this story.

2 Comments Satoshi Nakamoto’s account hacked?

  1. Bob

    I don’t know or care squat about Bitcoin but I gotta ask one thing: what does it matter if the he/she/they behind “Satoshi” are found out? Why would some people want to harm them?

  2. Nihsotas.

    Whatever, when I did post about Dorian, my account was still active. Afterwards I neglected to maintain the mail account, so for some reason GMX Germany did release the account. After that moment, it was pretty easy to recover some accounts like the Sourceforge account. Needless to say, he could not do a lot of harm because i do sign all my messages with PGP/GPG in clear text.So for the record, my pgp key is Ox5EC948A1, the only key that proofs my id. This key is a subkey, but I still have the master keys, but I messed up something that I have to fix. Currently I do use one of my old keys PGP-key: Ox4997BEC5. last weeks I did post a lot on twitter, did try to catch up with my old contacts. Most do ask to provide proof, obviously because many fraud did step in last years. I did ask for patience. About the claim, this. I did use TOR over VPN, so my identity was not revealed that time. I did use safe exit nodes, using draconion security, such as 5 hops. I did not use aliases on my [email protected] account, so the guy talks out of his butt. Neither he could grap my wallet or PGP keys. 7 years ago I did hide my identity for obvious reasons. My invention was too big to fail. Now we are 2016. Bitcoin is an official and legal coin. I was NEVER involved in laundry, drugs, silkroad or whatever. I did not write most of the code, others did, having my authority to do so. I was virtual president of the Foundation, but never did presented me. Nobody knew my real name. Satoshi Nakamoto, means the clear vision is in the heart (the center). The name itself contains my real name, using a complicated ROT-encryption. So if I am not able to repair my keys, I have other ways to proof my claim. I do live, I am healthy. I am not an academic. Not a genius, however I am gifted with a strong intuition and vision. I did invented a few things but gave all away for free. My life is not to seek acceptance, recognition, money or power. My life is to find a solution so this planet becomes a better place for ALL PEOPLE. Because I do belief if everyone is happy and lives in comfort, this will solve all problems related to security, criminal affairs, pollution, so WE can focus all together to new inventions that makes our life more easy in full balance with nature. I belief, nothing is lost, all has a reason. I belief strong, in people and God. I do belief in UNITY. Satoshin (@nihsotas) So I ask to have patience, so I can proof my claims, but I do warn all from now. You can not claim to be me, if You do not clearsign my messages with my PGP key. I am the only one able too, so let all those who claim to be me provide the signed message. I am the only one able too, and You all will see, nobody will come forward to be Satoshin, as it is me. So before a good laugh, to loose again time in rattle, go to notice my last posts on social media, especially a second invention I did spread in Reddit and twitter, to ditch poverty using my own invention, bitcoin. And thanks for all people who made bitcoin a success. Whatever You do belief about me. All the Best, Satoshi Nakamoto (the real one) aka DEBO Jurgen E. G.

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