ILLUSTRATION BY MICHELE MARCONI

The Sunday Times, 

In 2013, I spent £2,000 on just over 100 bitcoins — inspired by the anarchic long shot that this revolutionary new currency might one day bring down the banking system. Since then the price has repeatedly skyrocketed and tumbled again. At bitcoin’s peak, in December 2017, my coins were worth £1.5m. Lucky — for the person who stole them.

My bitcoins were among those taken five years ago in a £300m hack of a bitcoin exchange. At the time it was the world’s largest heist, eclipsing even the Hatton Garden jewellery robbery. Unlike gemstones, though, bitcoins are supposedly traceable. The trail left by the thief has led me on a rollercoaster ride through cycles of hope and despair that mirror the peaks and troughs of…