This year has witnessed a surprising spike in activity from Bitcoins that have been dormant since 2012, often referred to as ‘sleeping bitcoins.’ Recent transactions have seen these old coins spring to life and move across the network. Specifically, four days ago, there were eight transactions moving a total of 520 BTC originating from 2012. On a Sunday afternoon, another transaction from the same year moved 149.99 BTC. Remarkably, this particular wallet had been inactive for more than 11 years and started with a value of just $853. As of today, the value of this Bitcoin stash has skyrocketed to a whopping $3.93 million.
This pattern continued into the next day. On Monday, an address created on the same day as the aforementioned 2012 transaction shifted 157.66 BTC. Despite no activity from 2010 or 2011 bitcoins in September, this month has recorded 19 transactions from 2012.
The recent transaction of 149.99 BTC, which took place on September 24, 2023, at block height 809,204, was initiated by the bitcoin address “1HdwP” and directed to “1LWgC,” where the funds currently reside. This original address was established back on February 8, 2012, and its bitcoins, which traded at $5.69 each back then, had remained untouched for nearly 12 years. Fast forward to the day of the recent transaction, and the value of these coins has shot up to an impressive $3.93 million.
Blockchain parser btcparser.com first detected this movement, and a privacy analysis tool from Blockchair assigned the transaction a privacy score of zero. This score suggests a significant breach in the privacy of the parties involved, with identified issues like address reuse raising concerns.
Following this, another transaction, moving 157.66 BTC valued at $4.1 million, took place the next day at block height 809,258 from an address created on the same day in 2012. Unfortunately, this transaction didn’t take any privacy precautions either, with vulnerabilities like address reuse and round value outputs evident.
Historically, when this 2012 address was established, its total value was approximately $897. After these recent movements, the cumulative transfer of these decade-old bitcoins in 2023 now stands at a staggering 5,438.46 BTC, which translates to around $141 million.
In the interim period between the 149.99 BTC and the 520 BTC transactions, there were movements from more recent years as well, including transfers of 59.19 BTC from 2015, 15 BTC from 2016, and a total of 139.99 BTC across three transactions from 2014 wallets. It’s worth noting that just before the 149.99 BTC transfer from 2012, 63.99 BTC out of the 139.99 BTC originating from 2014 wallets were moved.