Stefan Thomas, a programmer living in San Francisco, has two guesses left to figure out a password that is worth about $220 million.
The password will let him unlock a small hard drive which contains the private keys to a digital wallet that holds 7,002 Bitcoin.
The problem is that Mr. Thomas years ago lost the paper where he wrote down the password for his hard drive, which gives users 10 guesses before it seizes up and encrypts its contents forever. He has since tried eight of his most commonly used password formulations — to no avail.
Of the existing 18.5 million Bitcoin, around 20 percent appear to be in lost or otherwise stranded wallets, according to the cryptocurrency data firm Chainalysis.
seize up：片語，故障、不能動。例句：The air condition suddenly seized up this morning.（冷氣在今天早上突然故障了。）
encrypt：動詞，加密。例句：The SD card has been encrypted, so my computer cannot read it.（這張記憶卡已經被加密，所以我的電腦無法讀取它。）
to no avail：片語，無濟於事、完全沒用。例句：They have protested for 3 months but to no avail.（他們已經抗議了3個月，但還是完全沒用。）