The late John McAfee tells the story of how he first found out about Bitcoin
From the Cointelegraph archives, John McAfee tells his crypto story and takes a look back at his very fascinating life.
Early in his life, the computer programmer landed a job at the United States National Aeronautics and Space Administration, also known as NASA, and worked on the world’s first weather satellite. There, he learned about computer security and people’s concerns over unauthorized actors gaining access to private data.
McAfee also shared that he made all his money not from the popular “McAfee” antivirus software but from other projects. He explained:
“People know me from McAfee, but no, that was not my greatest success. That was some trivial thing. It was my future things, which I did not attach my name to, that taught me and made me all of my money.”
In 2011, McAfee’s friends pressured him into reading the Bitcoin (BTC) white paper published by its pseudonymous creator Satoshi Nakamoto. The computer programmer was impressed with the power of Bitcoin’s mathematics and saw the digital asset’s world-changing potential.
According to McAfee, his entry to crypto started with being the chairman and CEO of MGT, which was the world’s sixth largest BTC mining firm, valued at $800 million. However, McAfee noted that it eventually folded when BTC sank after going sky-high.
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The company was delisted by the New York Stock Exchange, which McAfee claimed was a warning shot — an attempt to silence him and a threat that he would be destroyed if he didn’t be quiet. McAfee continued the story:
“First of all, they tried to collect me in America when they convened a grand jury. I found out about it beforehand, so we left the following day to Florida. We picked up our yacht with Janice, myself, four large dogs and seven of my staff and sailed away, went to the Bahamas.”
McAfee said that they eventually went to Cuba and then to the Dominican Republic, where they were arrested before getting off the boat.