A Bitcoin wallet belonging to an anonymous whale has awakened after sitting dormant for 13 years. The wallet contains 1,005 BTC worth $29.75 million that was mined in 2010, which were then moved by the user to new addresses in a number of different transactions.
Virgin Bitcoins Mined in 2010 Moved For The First Time
Blockchain researcher and developer Dr. Kirill Kretov noted that the “virgin” Bitcoins were mined just a year after Bitcoin’s inception and were transferred to the whale’s wallet in November 2010.
The news is exciting not just because of the tokens’ mining date but also the amount involved.
Blockchain analytics firm Whale Alert was the first to spot the transaction when the ancient addresses moved all the Bitcoins to another anonymous wallet. The original wallet first received 1,000 BTC in 2010 when Bitcoin was trading at just $0.225. A second transaction of 5 BTC was made in April 2011, at which point the cryptocurrency was trading at $1.31.
Over the past decade, the wallet has received minuscule amounts of Bitcoin on numerous occasions. Some analysts believe that may have been the result of possible dusting attacks, which involve hackers and scammers sending tiny portions (dust) of the crypto asset to a large number of wallets in an apparent effort to break the privacy of the wallet holder.
On certain occasions, good actors like academic researchers and law enforcement could also carry out dusting attacks for non-malicious reasons.
According to on-chain data and a wallet statement shared by Blockchain, the 1,005 BTC valued at just $328 in 2010, are now worth a whopping $29 million.
Some Speculate The Wallet Belongs to Satoshi Nakamoto
There are rumors doing rounds that suggest the wallet may have belonged to Satoshi Nakamoto, the pseudonymous creator of Bitcoin. Analysts estimate that to date, Nakamoto has mined 1 million Bitcoins. He took the first batch of 50 BTC as a reward for mining the genesis block of the Bitcoin network in January 2009.
However, the last time anyone has ever seen Nakamoto online was in December 2010.
Speaking to crypto news outlet Cointelegraph, Kretov said it was unlikely that the father of Bitcoin was moving his stash of virgin tokens around. He claims the transaction may have been performed by a long-term holder or some entity that was linked with previous dormant Bitcoin awakenings.
Freshly Mined Bitcoins Rated Higher Than Market Price
The analyst also believes that Bitcoins will be priced higher than the current market because they are “100% clean”. The age of the tokens will also be an important factor in attracting crypto-numismatics, added Dr. Kretov.
One person he suspects is the user who had previously moved dormant Bitcoins from wallets in different attempts between 2020 and 2021. According to the crypto researcher, the transactions involved 13 wallet awakenings that contained 1,000 BTC each, amounting to a grand total of 13,000 Bitcoins.
Wallet Awakenings Are A Rare Occurrence
In the years following Bitcoin’s inception, there had only been three other instances where awakenings of wallets containing 1,000 BTC or more had occurred.
The first of these transactions took place in December 2021, when 1,000 BTC from 2 wallets mined in 2011 was moved. A second wallet was awakened in April 2023, when 1,000 BTC mined in 2011 was transferred out. Three months later, another 1,037 BTC was moved from a wallet created in 2012.
According to Kretov, the key difference between the latest awakening and the ones that took place earlier this year is that the Bitcoins involved were freshly mined ones. Whereas, the tokens from 2011 and 2012 came to the wallets from different sources.
Apart from dormant wallet awakenings, Bitcoin whales have been busy making large transactions. On Monday, two Coinbase wallets received 2,566 BTC worth $75.5 million each from unknown wallets. Another Coinbase account received 3,201 BTC worth $94.5 million and 10,798 BTC worth more $300 million was transferred from Gemini to an anonymous wallet.
At the time of writing, Bitcoin (BTC) was trading at $28,562 – down 2% in the last 24 hours.