The lure of crypto wallet recovery
A postcard from the future
// In 2021 there are billions of dollars in cryptocurrency wallets which haven’t been touched in years. If crypto doesn’t crash and burn, the lengths which people will go to get access to those digital funds may become a bit more... extreme.
<Setting: a remote telepresence status update meeting in 2030>
An amber alert light blinked in the lower right of Jean’s glasses. Jean’s eyes flicked toward it, pupils dilated as they read the summary. Jean engaged their remote presence avatar, left the meeting, and began messaging furiously.
“Prescott, pick up. Yes, we need to talk right now, in real time. Got a match from the monitoring systems. It’s an obituary for a former tech worker. They had an old github repo under their realname from 2022 which in one of the revs has a crypto wallet address. That wallet hasn’t been accessed in the last decade, but it’s loaded - Ethereum and NFTs. And here’s the best part - there is an archived Tweet associated with them about the importance of “offline backups” of recovery phrases. AI analysis of their tweets/likes/posts makes it very likely that there is a physical copy of the wallet’s recovery phrase somewhere in the house.
“We need to move fast on this. I’ve spun up a smart contract and funded it with an initial stake. We need someone on the ground to contact the estate asap and make sure they don’t throw stuff out. Maybe make an offer to help clean the house. Details are on the way, along with payout splits. You in?