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XRP purchased with Snapswap, lost forever?


electricshadows
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Hey all, I know a few people have asked similar questions but I am very much having trouble understanding what to do here.  I purchased several thousand XRP with SnapSwap US in 2014.  I never received any email from SnapSwap announcing that they were shutting down and now I'm not sure if my XRP are lost forever.  I beleive this currency would be worth several hundred to a thousand dollars now.  This is what I have:

1) An email from Snapswap saying that the purchase was complete and the purchase had been sent to my Ripple address, which is a long string of letters and numbers.  It does not list a Ripple USERNAME.

2) An email from Snapswap saying they were depositing a 500XRP bonus into my account as a reward for my purchase.  This lists my Snapswap account name and my Ripple address (same long string of letters and numbers) but not USERNAME.

3) Zero emails from Ripple Trade or anything else confirming a ripple username.

4) Zero emails from Snapswap letting me know they were shutting down.

So this is where I am lost.  Snapswap.us doesn't exist anymore so I can't log into that account.  I have no record of getting a Ripple username, which I am required to enter in order to migrate through Gatehub.  I have a wallet address where my money was sent but no way to get to that wallet.

Any advice?

Edited by electricshadows
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2 minutes ago, JoelKatz said:

Is the first letter of that long string an "r"? At any time, did you have a long string of letters and numbers that starts with an "s"?

Yes, this first letter is an "r".  I do not seem to have any string that begins with "s".

Edited by electricshadows
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13 minutes ago, electricshadows said:

Yes, this first letter is an "r".  I do not seem to have any string that begins with "s".

You can at least use bithomp.com/explorer to see whether your XRP balance is still in that wallet. It will be exceedingly difficult to access those funds without the secret key or somehow getting SnapSwap to respond. This is the promise and the curse of cryptocurrency, the cryptography is very strong.

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16 minutes ago, Closingbell2012 said:

Unless you have a secret key of your wallet you can write it off. I wonder what really happened with SnapSwap. Anyone knows?

 

1 minute ago, cmbartley said:

You can at least use bithomp.com/explorer to see whether your XRP balance is still in that wallet. It will be exceedingly difficult to access those funds without the secret key or somehow getting SnapSwap to respond. This is the promise and the curse of cryptocurrency, the cryptography is very strong.

On the migration page (https://id.ripple.com/auth/migrate) the headline is "Retrieve Secret Key -- In order to retrieve your secret, we will collect certain information from you. Once your identity information has been verified, you will receive an email which will include a link to your settings page where you can retrieve your secret key".

So it seems to indicate there is a way to retrieve this key, but it asks me to input the Username from my "PREVIOUS RIPPLE.COM/CLIENT ACCOUNT".

This is where the confusion comes in, I don't have any record of having a ripple.com account username.  I only had a snapswap account.

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43 minutes ago, electricshadows said:

 

1) An email from Snapswap saying that the purchase was complete and the purchase had been sent to my Ripple address, which is a long string of letters and numbers.  It does not list a Ripple USERNAME.

2) An email from Snapswap saying they were depositing a 500XRP bonus into my account as a reward for my purchase.  This lists my Snapswap account name and my Ripple address (same long string of letters and numbers) but not USERNAME.

3) Zero emails from Ripple Trade or anything else confirming a ripple username.

 

It appears that a step is missing.  At some you should have converted your USD.snapswap into XRP.  If this was not done your wallet will only contain USD IOUs and the 500 xrp bonus.

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8 minutes ago, CNFlinch said:

It appears that a step is missing.  At some you should have converted your USD.snapswap into XRP.  If this was not done your wallet will only contain USD IOUs and the 500 xrp bonus.

Can you please explain what step is missing?  I have checked the account with bithomp.com/explorer and there are indeed XRP in there beyond the bonus.

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28 minutes ago, electricshadows said:

Is the secret key a random password or something that users set themselves?

The secret key is one of the inputs used to create your public key. You public key is your wallet address and in Ripple it starts with "r". Your secret key starts with "s". Because of some fancy elliptic curve cryptography and modular math it is very easy to go from the secret to the public key but almost impossible to go in the reverse direction. In a bad analogy, the public key (ripple address) is like an open mail slot that everyone knows that address to and that anyone can insert mail into. The secret key is akin to your unique finger print that allows you and only you to get into the mailbox. Anyone can insert into the address only you can remove from the address unless someone discovers or clones your fingerprint. Because of the mathematical properties of key generation, no one can help you if the private key is entirely lost. This what makes cryptocurrency so secure but it also means that lost keys = lost funds forever effectively (given current technology).

Here's a simple video:

Here's a more complicated video:

 

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Thank you everyone for the interesting and informative replies.  Here is where I'm really getting lost:

Even IF I had my secret passcode, how could I use it to access my XPR?  I do not have my Ripple username and password.  So where would I go and what would I do with the account number and secret key in order to access the funds?

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3 minutes ago, electricshadows said:

Thank you everyone for the interesting and informative replies.  Here is where I'm really getting lost:

Even IF I had my secret passcode, how could I use it to access my XPR?  I do not have my Ripple username and password.  So where would I go and what would I do with the account number and secret key in order to access the funds?

It's going back a few years, and forgive terminology, but I thought that early on for awhile Snap Swap hosted a version of the ripple client.  So your snap swap username and password gained you access to your ripple public and private keys.  At some point though they discontinued it (around the time ripple client became ripple trade). 

I believe Snap Swap is still around in Luxembourg working on Euro DLT stuff.  

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3 minutes ago, CNFlinch said:

It's going back a few years, and forgive terminology, but I thought that early on for awhile Snap Swap hosted a version of the ripple client.  So your snap swap username and password gained you access to your ripple public and private keys.  At some point though they discontinued it (around the time ripple client became ripple trade). 

I believe Snap Swap is still around in Luxembourg working on Euro DLT stuff.  

Ok, I see. But the question I was asking is if I recover the secret key, what do I do?  Even if I could get SnapSwap to give me my private and public keys, I would have no idea what to do with them in order to access the account. 

Edited by electricshadows
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9 minutes ago, electricshadows said:

Ok, I see. But the question I was asking is if I recover the secret key, what do I do?  Even if I could get SnapSwap to give me my private and public keys, I would have no idea what to do with them in order to access the account. 

If you recover the secret key, that is all you need. You can import it into Gatehub, rippex, or the jatchili wallet on Github and it will produce the public address and you can continue to use that account or you can send the contents to another account. 

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