Hacker Cheats PrimeDice Out of a Cool Million in Bitcoin
The PrimeDice con, which exploited a weakness in the site’s random number generator, and the brouhaha that followed in the Bitcoin community, illustrate some of the challenges operators face in this new market.
To get his million, the hackers (who goes by the handle, Hufflepuff) figured out a way to bet roughly $8,000 worth of Bitcoin every second for an extended period. That was enough to beat the game, which is a sort of high/low guessing game based on some pretty intense math that should be tough to track.
In a statement to Gambling911.com, a PrimeDice representative seemed pretty nonchalant about the whole affair saying:
Our entire team was shocked that Hufflepuff continued to beat the house edge (1%) and stack up more and more profit over time. Given the nature of Bitcoin there wasn’t much we could do but take it on the chin.
The, “nature of Bitcoin,” he’s referring to is the anonymity the digital currency is famous for. There is almost no way for anyone to track exactly who is spending a specific Bitcoin.
Though PrimeDice is offering a reward to anyone who helps recover their lost million, the chances of that actually happening are next to impossible.
On Bitcoin and hacker forums, the famously libertarian Bitcoin crowd seemed to take a blame the victim approach and chided PrimeDice to flaws in their number generator. More than one poster trotted out the old, “Casinos are just trying to take advantage of people anyways,” argument.
No matter how you slice it, PrimeDice’s story says a lot about the inherent risks of working in the Bitcoin space.