Sailing the seas of Crypto Currencies: Sharks and Landmines

I’ve been into Bitcoin and Crypto currencies now since late 2013.  One of the fun things I did was back in 2015 was invest $100 (at the time) of Bitcoin into a presale funding project called Augur.  The idea with Augur was to be a prediction market.  It was one of the first of what has become known as ICOs (Initial Coin Offerings) which are like IPOs but just give you tokens.  In the case of Augur you get REP which is reputation.  The project isn’t live yet, but will allow people to predict what will happen then people with REP can say what really happened and verify that outcome.  Sort of like gambling I suppose.  (Which if you are investing anything in crypto you are basically gambling, so if you take my advice, only invest what you can lose, cause you could lose it all.)

Anyway, I didn’t think much of Augur and let it just go on but then with all the hype that crypto currencies have been generating lately I thought:  What the heck, let’s see what is going on with this project.  First of all, what I realized is that everyone and their grandma is creating an ICO and really the whole basis of Ethereum is to help people create their own ICOs.  I still don’t know of a killer app that has come out of it, but maybe its cause I’m still in the dark.  My own belief is that this world is still very very early and much work has to be done before it really gets to the masses.

I had forgotten that when I had registered for Augur, it put it in an ethereum account.  I had also forgotten where that was.  So after looking around a bit, I saw that it was on and my address was


Going to that website you can see the transactions that have since occured, but looking at the token transfers, you can see that $100 allowed me to get 158.3 Augur tokens.  Before July 11th, there were no ETH in there, just REP.

All was well and good, and then to keep more tabs on what was going on, I joined the slack channel.  There I got a nice message that I should enable 2 Factor Authentication on my Ethereum account.  Well that is a nice reminder!  (So I thought).  So stupidly I clicked on the link and it took me to a site that looked just like, only this place was <- DO NOT GO HERE!  Phishing site!

After entering my private key and getting an error menu, I realized what I had done!  I’d been phished!  But were the tokens still there?

Going to the real site of I saw that they were.  What a relief!  Now I needed to generate a new wallet and move the REP over to there before the phishing nasties did it.  When I tried, I realized I didn’t have any Ethereum in the account necessary to generate the transaction.  Dang it!  So I moved some from another account into that account to fund it.  After stumbling around that for a little bit, I next moved all the REP over.  Once that was confirmed I moved the last of the ETH out of the account.

At this point the tokens seem to be safe but that was pretty stressful for a bit there!


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