This guy works in IT, but he doesn't seem to have heard that it's
extremely unwise to dump or recycle hard drives unless they have first
had any data they contain rendered completely unreadable (least by being
totally wiped - or if you're really paranoid, by physical damage).
Of course, he hasn't lost millions, he has just failed to profit from
his small investment.
*Remember bitcoins can go down as well as up... but not usually under
3 feet of trash in an area the size of a football pitch.
One cannot but feel a degree of sympathy for him.
However, he should look on the bright side. He did not have to work for
£4.5m worth of assets. He got nothing for them. The guy who presumably
would have paid him £4.5 m for them still has his money in his pocket.
There are no losers.
So if I lost a winning lottery ticket for £4.5M, no one would have lost
anything? By that reckoning, even the £1 I paid for the ticket wasn't
'lost', as it went go into the coffers of those running the lottery -
as would the £4.5M that I couldn't claim. [OK, there may still be ways
of claiming it, but let's not get side-tracked.]
Even if they recovered the hard drive, the electronics would probably be
knackered. It would a specialist recovery to get the data off the disk.
Another question I ask myself - "What's a hard drive doing in landfill?"
Presumably its owner simply threw it in his rubbish bin (or the
recycling facility 'household waste skip'), rather than put it in the
electronics/electrical recycling area?
In this case it was most likely a stupid system introduced by the
local authority. If ours are typical one would have a 3 mile drive up
a country road in order to deposit a hard drive in the small
electrical products skip. No bus service and even if there were the
site does not permit pedestrians. My old drives get a drill through
the platters then go in the bin in a plastic bag with all the rest of
TBH I have stopped bothering to recycle. The local authority now make
it so difficult it isn't worth the bother for the small amounts we
used to do.
The rule was mandated by HMG
The LA is just following it
This is typical of waste disposal centers. Making them the designated
deposit site for small electricals under WEEE was stupid (for those
reasons). Only the UK did this. Other countries have a much more sensible
solution (from the consumer pov)
You mean 14 weeks? As long as the platters are intact, the data should
be recoverable. So, I think it might be okay. It will have gone through
the compacter on the rubbish truck, but unless it got sliced in half,
I'd expect an aluminium casting to stand up to that.
It could be, but only as long as Bitcoins maintain their current
Unfortunately, they are notoriously volatile and you could spend weeks
digging for a hard drive that might only be worth a few thousand
Pounds by the time you find it. That is assuming it's still readable
And trashing the drive before dumping it wouldn't have helped.
Uncle Larry was smoking in a restaurant the other day when a guy came up to him and said, "That smoke's bothering me."
Larry said, "Well, it's killing me. If I don't care about what it's doing to me, why would I give a shit what it's doing to you?"
Hence the original comment "This guy works in IT, but he doesn't seem to have heard that it's extremely unwise to dump or recycle hard drives unless they have first had any data they contain rendered completely unreadable" was silly.
Eagles may soar, but weasels aren't sucked into jet engines.
That depends entirely what the HDD was used for. Not every computer HDD
contains personal information that would do any harm if it fell into the
wrong hands. I have HDDs that have only ever been used to store movies.
If I were to throw any of those away, I wouldn't bother wiping or
destroying them. Such archiving drives are often cheap and slow, and
can take *days* to wipe.
He need have no fears about someone finding the HDD and taking his
money. Anyone who finds the drive and realises what it's worth would
*have* to contact him and make some sort of deal in order to get the
password to the bitcoin wallet (provided the guy can remember it).
Without the password the wallet is useless.
Not that I would expect the HDD to still work after being in a landfill
site for 14 years. Hard drives have breather holes through which water
will seep in, so the innards are probably irretrievable corroded by now.
And imagine how he would feel if he undertakes months of searching and
*does* find his HDD, spends the money and effort to recover the data
from the corroded drive, only to find that he cannot recall the password
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