The wallets were assumed to have been inaccessible after the exchange creator passed away in 2018, as he was the only person responsible for the wallets’ private keys, and he was the only one in possession of those keys.
After years of inactivity, it was recently revealed that five accounts related to the defunct Canadian cryptocurrency exchange QuadrigaCX were abruptly exchanging around $1.7 million worth of Bitcoin. These wallets were not thought to exist before the recent find, which disproved this theory.
A researcher in the field of cryptocurrency by the name of ZachXBT issued a warning to the cryptocurrency community on December 19 in the form of a tweet. The message focused on the five wallets that moved around 104 Bitcoin to other wallets.
The information that has been preserved on the blockchain indicates that the wallets have not moved any Bitcoin since at least April 2018.
After the death of its founder and CEO, Gerald Cotten, in December 2018, QuadrigaCX was previously the most prominent bitcoin exchange in Canada. Gerald Cotten passed away. Nonetheless, in April 2019, the exchange announced that it would seek protection under bankruptcy laws. Cotten was the only individual who had knowledge of the private keys of the wallets used by the exchange.
At the time of its failure, some 155,000 customers were owed a total of nearly $200 million in cryptocurrency.
According to a report published in February 2019 by Ernst & Young, one of the Big Four accounting firms that oversaw the exchange’s equity, on February 6, 2019, QuadrigaCX made an accidental transfer of approximately 103 BTC to cold wallets that only they were accessible to the late Cotten.
The overall value is very close to exactly the same as the most recent trading volume in Bitcoin.