On November 3, 2020, the cryptocurrency community noticed that one of the largest addresses holding 69,369 bitcoins from the Silk Road were transferred. Following the onchain movement, the U.S. government revealed it had seized the coins from a person they dubbed “Individual X.” The following is an in-depth look at what we know about the Silk Road bitcoin address that was seized by U.S. law enforcement.
This week on election day in the U.S., American law enforcement officials seized 69,369 bitcoins worth over $1 billion today. The bitcoin address is a well known address and news.Bitcoin.com reported on the address on September 11, 2020. The reason why our newsdesk looked into the address is because hackers have been trying to sell an alleged encrypted wallet dat file during the last two years.
The bitcoin address called “1HQ3Go3ggs8pFnXuHVHRytPCq5fGG8Hbhx” or “1HQ3” for short, stemmed from the Silk Road according to blockchain analysis. According to onchain data, 1HQ3 got 69,471 BTC sent to the address on April 9, 2013. The funds came from the Silk Road (SR) marketplace and many of the funds stemmed from the SR bitcoin address “1BBq.”
Individual X managed to hack nearly $1 billion from the old Silk Road Bitcoin accounts.
Then the govt found Individual X and took the Bitcoin back, the DOJ announced today.
Who is Individual X? pic.twitter.com/N0Rra8EqOR
— Nathaniel Popper (@nathanielpopper) November 5, 2020
Between April 2013 and up until the day the address was seized, only one large transfer was sent. 101 BTC (over $1.5M) was sent to the now-defunct Btc-e exchange and after that, the wallet only contained 69,369 BTC.
Reports show that federal law enforcement seized the funds on November 3 and are seeking forfeiture with the courts. They describe obtaining the BTC from a “hacker” and prosecutors call the person “Individual X.” The person the government calls Individual X is still a mystery to this day…