A prominent member of the Bitcoin community had his bank account hacked, today.
After $500 was stolen from the account, his bank called him to report suspicious activity. Authorities believe his ATM card was likely cloned and his PIN recorded at a compromised ATM or merchant location.
"Thankfully they didn't take more," he remarked in an interview over Skype while asking to remain anonymous, as he uses his real name within the community.
"At least, with Bitcoin, the security of my account is completely within my own hands. It's up to me how secure I want it to be. When I transact with Bitcoin, I don't have to hand over any personal information or passwords that could compromise my account."
While there have been some high profile website hacks in the Bitcoin community, all related to "e-wallets" and exchanges, there have not been any reported for several months now, as website operators appear to have successfully closed the holes in their security.
One type of crime that has never been tied to a Bitcoin transaction, however, is identity theft. It has taken several years for Internet users to grow comfortable with the idea that they can provide all of their personal details and credit card information to a website, even though there have been many high profile database hacks, resulting in gigabytes of personal data entering the hands of criminals.
Bitcoin users never provide any personal information to a website, as transactions are essentially similar to using cash in the physical world. As a result, no Bitcoin merchant has ever been hacked, as there would be no useful information to obtain.
At the end of our interview, the Bitcoin user we spoke with remained on hold with the bank, "due to a high number of calls."