Bitcoin Facts: Top 7 Surprising Facts You Didn't Know About

Last Updated October 19th 2022
6 Min Read

There are a lot of intriguing Bitcoin facts that you probably were not aware of about one of the most exciting innovations that the 21st century has seen. 

Bitcoin has emerged in the crypto market as the first and biggest cryptocurrency. For many, the nature of Bitcoin could be a mystery on its own. Even the true identity behind Bitcoin’s founder remains unknown to the world. Take a look at our list of Bitcoin facts that you might not have known about this revolutionary cryptocurrency.

1. The Smallest Unit Of Bitcoin Is A ‘Millisatoshi’ And Not A ‘Satoshi’

Many people are led to believe that the smallest unit of a Bitcoin is a Satoshi, which is equal to 0.00000001 Bitcoins (BTC). However, the actual smallest unit of a Bitcoin is a Millisatoshi, which is equal to 0.001 Satoshi and 0.00000000001 Bitcoins (BTC).

So one Satoshi is 100 millionth of a Bitcoin (BTC). The Satoshi unit was named after the pseudonym of the Bitcoin founder, Satoshi Nakamoto. The reason why such small units exist is to make it easier for people to complete low-fee transactions and ease the services conducted in the market.

 2. A Person Could Have Gotten 5 Bitcoins (BTC) For Free In 2010

In 2010, Gavin Andersen, the software developer who is in charge of Bitcoin, developed a Bitcoin faucet to give free Bitcoins to people in order to promote the cryptocurrency.

Of course, no one would have known that Bitcoin would have appreciated so much during that year, and those who still hold onto those free Bitcoins could as well be rich. As of November 2021, when Bitcoin reached its all-time high of $68,789.63, 5 BTC would be equivalent to $343,945.

Today, free Bitcoin units are rarely given, and when they are, it is usually in units of Satoshi, which is a relatively extremely small amount.

3. The Purchase Of Two Pizzas Is The First Bitcoin Payment Ever Completed

On May 22 of 2010, a guy from Florida named Laszlo Hanyecz decided to buy two pizzas from Papa John’s worth $25 with his 10000 Bitcoins (BTC) that he had treasured.

According to Investopedia, 10000 Bitcoins (BTC) in that time were worth around $41, so Laszlo Hanyecz did not consider the payment a huge loss at first. With Bitcoin value soaring in recent times, those two pizzas would hypothetically be the most expensive edibles in the world.

Precisely, 10,000 Bitcoins (BTC) when Bitcoin reached its all-time high of $68,789.63 in November last year, would be equivalent to $687,896,300. However, Laszlo Hanyecz does not regret the decision he made back then, even though he could have become a very wealthy man if he is not already.

4. Bitcoin Is Not The First Existent Cryptocurrency

Bitcoin has established itself as the first cryptocurrency to ever be released. However, the first actual digital currency to be invented was DigiCash, a currency founded by computer scientist David Chaum.

DigiCash was founded in 1989 and operated successfully until 1998 when it bankrupted due to its failed attempts to keep up with early successes and partner with financial institutions. Moreover, DigiCash is usually considered the predecessor of Bitcoin (BTC).

5. FBI Was Also Involved In Illicit Activities During The Silk Road Investigation

The Silk Road was a black market operating in the dark web and was founded by Ross William Ulbricht in 2011.

The relevance of this black market is that people used Bitcoins to complete transactions for any illegal product. The FBI shut down the whole operation in 2013 and arrested some people in charge of the Silk Road, including Ross Ulbricht.

However, in 2015, two FBI agents who were involved in the Silk Road operation were found guilty of cooperating with Ross Ulbright, as well as using the Silk Road network to exchange confidential information and launder money. Approximately $1 billion worth of bitcoins have been seized by the FBI from the beginning of their operation to shut down Silk Road.

6. Bitcoin Version 0.3.10 Came To Realization Accidentally

Bitcoin 0.3.10 was an upgrade done on the Bitcoin network after an error occurred on August 15, 2010.

Block number 74638 held a transaction code that generated approximately 184 billion Bitcoins to be separated by three different addresses.

After a few hours, the people in charge of the Bitcoin network added the upgrades and took responsibility for the inconveniences caused on the Bitcoin network. Bitcoin forked, and the Bitcoins that were wrongly generated were removed. 

7. Bitcoin Private Keys Are Immensely Secure

When it comes to security, Bitcoin and its blockchain are indeed very safe. Private keys are used to ‘sign’ every transaction that a person does.

Each private key is unique, so a person must be responsible for preserving his/her private key from other people. Private keys are practically impossible to be guessed or tried by other people or computers because a private key can be any integer between 1 to 10 to the power of 77, and so far, technology limits us from being able to find such a number without taking an extraordinarily long time.

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Key Points

  • Although Bitcoin is already popular and mysterious in its nature, there are a few facts that you might not have heard before.
  • While many think that Satoshi is the smallest unit of a Bitcoin, Millisatoshi is the actual smallest.
  • In 2010, Bitcoin faucet gifted 5 Bitcoins per user.
  • The first payment ever made with Bitcoins was for two pizzas at Papajohn’s for 10000 BTC.
  • Although Bitcoin is considered the first successful cryptocurrency, DigiCash was its ancestor that operated from 1989 to 1998.
  • After Silk Road black market was shut down by the FBI, two FBI agents were found guilty of using Silk Road for money laundering and exchanging confidential information.
  • After an error that almost generated 184 billion Bitcoins occurred, people in charge of Bitcoin upgraded the network to a new version that was known as Bitcoin 0.3.10.
  • Bitcoin private keys are practically impossible to be found because they are integers between 1 and 10 to the 77th power.

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