“Satoshi's Treasure”: how to earn $1,000,000
Cryptocurrencies are not about only transactions, trading and endless hackings of crypto exchanges. There is a huge community with a great sense of humour and of course money behind the coins. Some participants don’t even mind spending $1 million to arrange a "rat race" and unite like-minded people.
In mid-April 2019, the
crypto community was intrigued by a mystery. Anonymous individual(s) used Blockstream Satellite, a service that transmits BTC's blockchain data via satellite to Earth, to announce a hunt after $1 million in bitcoins. All you need to do is to solve several riddles and get the key to the wallet, where an impressive amount is stored.
“If you are reading this, it means something made you look for things that bring surprise and excitement in this world, that is too predictable” the report said.
Later on, the anonymous author promised to publish tips to three key fragments to access to the wallet on the website satoshistreasure.xyz. The game itself he called in honour of the father of the first cryptocurrency "Satoshi's Treasure".
Needless to say - at first, the community reacted quite skeptically, disbelieving that someone in their right mind was organising a million dollar rat race. However, soon enough, Bitcoin Magazine found out that one of the organisers of this race was a co-founder of Primitive Ventures, Eric Meltzer. He confirmed that “everything is serious”, and crypto-enthusiasts rushed into the “battle”.
Since the publication of the message, according to Meltzer, over 60,000 people from all over the world have subscribed for the prompts. The real number of players is many times bigger.
The first crypto player, prepare to charge!
Under the terms of the hunt, players need to collect at least 400 pieces of 1000 key fragments to the BTC wallet, which allegedly will allow to cast Shamir’s spell and get access to $1 million in cryptocurrency. Shamir is a reference to Adi Shamir, an Israeli cryptographer who was one of the founding fathers of the secure information transmitting principle - through public and private keys.
It would seem that for crypto community, that shouldn’t be a difficult task, given the high level of knowledge of some participants and their technical skills. The game, however, is not limited to the monitor or the screen of the smartphone.
Of course, there are technical puzzles in this game. However, the participants also have to interact with the real world. For example, in order to get one of the keys, crypto enthusiast John Cantrell had to find QR codes located in several cities. They led to the site where you had to enter the password.
Another puzzle that Cantrell guessed was embedded in the source code of the satoshistreasure.xyz site itself.
According to the authors of the Treasure of Nakamoto, 20-30% of the pieces of the general puzzle are scattered in different parts of the world. This means that users need to unite efforts for the sake of common victory.
And they are actively doing it. There are dozens of “clans" already. For example, in one of them there are 600 people, in the other - more than 100 from different countries. And some unions even pay rewards to outsiders if they provide information that helps in solving the riddles.
So far, crypto enthusiasts managed to solve 5 clues, and get as many fragments.
It is not known for sure, who is behind the organisation of "Satoshi's Treasure". Melzer claims that it is funded by a group of "veterans of the crypto industry." But there are other sponsors who help with the financing.
Among them there are Nawal Ravikant, Balaji Srinivasan, Mark Pincus, Andrew Lee, Nick Carter, Matt Walsh, Meltem Demirors, Lee Xiaolai, Jehan Cho and Sam Engelbardt, and IDEO CoLabs Ventures.
As for their purpose, it is also unclear. Malzer sees it as a “purely educational function.” He points at Cantrell as a role model. After the latter solved one of the puzzles, he posted a detailed description of his actions on GitHub and Twitter.
In addition, the development team has created a free Ordo application that helps participants collect and analyse tips, as well as ensures a fair distribution of money between the winners.
Even commerce has not bypassed “the Treasure of Satoshi”. A clan called ToshiCiphers showed an entrepreneurial spirit and opened a commercial store, where teams can buy t-shirts and other memorable “hunting" souvenirs.
$1 million for savvy
The fact that the organisers of the competition are not disclosing their identities is certainly alarming. On the other hand, even until now, no one knows the true identity of the Bitcoin’s founder Satoshi Nakamoto, and this fact did not prevent the crypto market from growing up to several hundred billion dollars.
It’s not the names that are not important. Crypto industry often forgets about what coins were originally - the knowledge of opportunities and the association of like-minded people. “Satoshi's Treasure” has already reminded of this, and already more than 60,000 people are looking for it. Among the “hunters” there were many, who didn’t know anything about cryptocurrencies. In fact, that’s the example of the way to popularise the coins, and there should be many more of such initiatives.
Author: Alexey Ryabukha