Who is Satoshi Nakamoto

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Satoshi Nakamoto

Satoshi Nakamoto is the founder of Bitcoin and initial creator of the Original Bitcoin client. He has said in a P2P foundation profile [1] that he is from Japan. Beyond that, not much else is known about him and his identity. He has been working on the Bitcoin project since 2007. [2]

His involvement in the Bitcoin project had tapered and by late 2020 it has ended. The most recent messages reportedly indicate that Satoshi is “gone for good” [3] .

Contents

Possible Motives

He left some clues about why he is doing this project with the inclusion of the following text in the Genesis block, “The Times 03/Jan/2009 Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks”.

Some interesting quotes:

Yes, [we will not find a solution to political problems in cryptography,] but we can win a major battle in the arms race and gain a new territory of freedom for several years.

Governments are good at cutting off the heads of a centrally controlled networks like Napster, but pure P2P networks like Gnutella and Tor seem to be holding their own. [4]

It’s very attractive to the libertarian viewpoint if we can explain it properly. I’m better with code than with words though. [5]

Possible identity

His identity and nationality are unknown.

He is entirely unknown outside of Bitcoin as far as anyone can tell, and his (never used) PGP key was created just months prior to the date of the genesis block. He seems to be very familiar with the cryptography mailing list, but there are no non-Bitcoin posts from him on it. He has used an email address from an anonymous mail hosting service (vistomail) as well as one from a free webmail account (gmx.com) and sends mail when connected via Tor. Some have speculated that his entire identity was created in advance in order to protect himself or the network. Perhaps he chose the name Satoshi because it can mean “wisdom” or “reason” and Nakamoto can mean “Central source”.

Ultimately the design of Bitcoin and its use of cryptographic proof and fully open implementation is one that makes its creator, in a sense, irrelevant and only of interest for historical reasons.

Who is Satoshi Nakamoto? We Look at The Possible Candidates

Bitcoin was conceived as a communal project. Designed as an open-source software and released to the public in 2009, Bitcoin was conceived with openness in mind. Functioning on an open ledger that is accessible to the public, Bitcoin is an open-source project.

But despite all its openness, one grand mystery remains unsolved:

Who Created Bitcoin and Who exactly is Satoshi Nakamoto?

Finding an answer to this question isn’t easy. We know that all the code that created Bitcoin originated with Satoshi Nakamoto, but that is about all we know. Satoshi Nakamoto didn’t work alone on launching Bitcoin.

Some of the early Bitcoin devs have been pointed to as possible Satoshis, but there are numerous issues when it comes to proving that any specific person was the creator of Bitcoin.

The Bitcoin Code

First, let’s detail what is known for certain. The first step was taken in 2007, when Nakamoto wrote the Bitcoin code. In November 2008, Satoshi Nakamoto published his now famous White Paper, which laid the groundwork for the Bitcoin protocol.

On January 3rd, 2009, the first ever Bitcoin block was mined, marking the creation of the cryptocurrency, it bore the message :

The Times 03/Jan/2009 Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks

Satoshi was heavily involved with the Bitcoin community, and collaborated with them in order to modify the underlying bitcoin protocol. After two years of involvement, Nakamoto handed the reins to Gavin Andresen, and seized involvement with the Bitcoin project in December of 2020.

In the Spring of 2020, Nakamoto returned to leave a final message, stating in a post that he had “moved on to other things,” and that Bitcoin was “in good hands with Gavin [Andresen] and everyone.” That was the last the world heard of the secretive Bitcoin creator.

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The mystery behind Nakamoto’s identity has only grown, as the Bitcoin community eagerly speculates who it could potentially be. Satoshi Nakamoto claims to be Japanese, born on April 5, 1975. To this day, it is unknown whether Nakamoto is male or female, or whether Nakamoto is even a single person or a group of individuals.

Some Early Devs Could be Nakamoto

Today most people are familiar with digital currency, thanks to the epic crypto rally of 2020. Back in 2008 when this was all getting started, the cryptocurrency world was a lot smaller. We know for sure that some of the people we talk about below knew each other.

In the case of David Kleiman and Craig Wright, there is solid evidence that the two worked together to get bitcoin off the ground, and both had substantial amounts of the tokens. There is an ongoing saga between Kleiman’s estate and Wright, alleging that there could have been some kind of graft, and that Wright ended up with bitcoins that were rightfully Kleiman’s.

You might notice that we wrote ‘Kleiman’s estate’ and not ‘Kleiman.’ The sad fact is that some of the people who could be Satoshi Nakamoto have died, which makes a positive identification much harder.

When the first bitcoins were being mined, basically nobody cared about them. The first bitcoin transaction was a trade of 10,000 BTC for two pizzas, which should give you some idea of how playful some of the early devs were with their project. There are a lot of questions surrounding the origins of Bitcoin, and as time goes on, they may become harder to answer.

Are They British ?

While Nakamoto’s identity remains unknown, This has not stopped enthusiasts from investigating his background and drawing up conclusions.

Nakamoto’s use of perfect English in his posts and his publication of the White Paper has raised skepticism as to his Japanese origin. Furthermore, his occasional use of British English in the code and comments has fueled speculation that he is a native English speaker of commonwealth origin.

Additionally, Stefan Thomas, a Swiss coder and active member in the Bitcoin community, graphed the time stamps of Nakamoto’s more than 500 posts, showing his or her complete absence of posts between midnight am and 6 am Greenwich Time, further informing investigators as to his potential whereabouts.

Nick Szabo

To date, there are several potential individuals suspected of being the mysterious Bitcoin creator. One of the first suggestions was Nick Szabo, a decentralized currency enthusiast who published a paper on “Bit Gold” considered to be a precursor to the first cryptocurrency.

By running a reverse textual analysis, internet researcher Skye Grey found dozens of unique phrases that linked Szabo’s writing style to that of the original whitepaper. This evidence is only circumstantial, however, and Szabo has repeatedly denied that he is the creator of Bitcoin.

Despite all the denials, the research into how the Bitcoin whitepaper was written shows remarkable similarities between how Szabo writes, and also what was omitted. One of the most curious things is that Satoshi Nakamoto made numerous references to ideas that had been used by Bit Gold, but never talked about Bit Gold directly.

Omitting the origin of relevant ideas strange, unless Szabo was deliberately trying to cover up his tracks. None of this is hard evidence, and to date Szabo has flatly denied being the key driver of Bitcoin’s launch.

Nick Szabo, Image from The-Blockchain

Dorian Prentice Satoshi Nakamoto

Another possibility is a Japanese American man living in California, named Dorian Prentice Satoshi Nakamoto, birth name Satoshi Nakamoto. First brought up in a March 2020 Newsweek article, Leah McGrath Goodman pointed to Nakamoto’s training as a physicist at Cal Poly University in Pomona and libertarian background as potential indicators of his identity.

Goodman’s biggest piece of evidence was his response to a question regarding Bitcoin: “I am no longer involved in that and I cannot discuss it. It’s been turned over to other people. They are in charge of it now. I no longer have any connection.”This led to a wild media frenzy, which even included a car chase.

However, in a later interview, he recanted his previous position, stating that he had misunderstood the reporter’s question, thinking it was related to his previous classified work as a military contractor.

Dorian Prentice Satoshi Nakamoto, Image from The Verge.

David Kleiman

David Kleiman had an interesting life, and was certainly involved in the beginnings of Bitcoin. His involvement with Bitcoin goes back to its earliest days, and he was one of the first Bitcoin miners. Kleiman had a long standing interest in computer security, and had designed systems that were used by the highest levels of the US government to secure their digital systems.

After becoming a paraplegic in a motorcycle accident, Kleiman went barreling into the world of cryptography. He was on the Metzdowd list, which may be where he first came in contact with the Bitcoin whitepaper.

Another theory puts him and Craig Wright at the center of the project. Gizmodo cites an email that allegedly came from Wright that states,

“I need your help editing a paper I am going to release later this year. I have been working on a new form of electronic money. Bit cash, Bitcoin…” and also, “You are always there for me Dave. I want you to be a part of it all.”

The email is alleged to predate the release of the Bitcoin whitepaper by a few months, which would make it a key piece of evidence in the search for Satoshi Nakamoto’s true identity.

Sadly, Kleiman died in 2020 under mysterious circumstances, which effectively eliminates him as a future source of information. Given his aptitude for data security, whatever digital information he left behind is also probably going to be difficult to access.

David Kleiman, Image from Gizmodo

Hal Finney

Hal Finney is another potential candidate to be the mysterious Satoshi Nakamoto. Finney was a pre-bitcoin cryptographic pioneer and was only the second person – after Nakamoto himself – to make use of the software, file bug reports, and suggest improvements.

Finney was the first to ever receive Bitcoin, stating in an interview that “ [he] was the recipient of the first bitcoin transaction, when Satoshi sent ten coins to [him] as a test.”

Forbes journalist Andy Greenberg speculated after requesting aid from writing analysis consultancy Juola & Associates that Greenberg may have been the ghostwriter for Satoshi Nakamoto.

Further adding to the speculation that Finney was involved with the creation of Bitcoin was his correspondence with the aforementioned Nick Szabo, and the fact that he lived only blocks apart from Dorian Prentice Satoshi Nakamoto.

At the time of his death on August 28, 2020, only circumstantial evidence pointed to Hal Finney being the original Satoshi Nakamoto.

Hal Finney, Image from Wired.

Craig Wright

Yet another possible contender to be Satoshi Nakamoto is the Australian academic, computer engineering expert, and entrepreneur, Craig Wright.

In early November of 2020, Gizmodo received an anonymous email (referenced above) from an individual stating that not only did he know that Craig Wright was the creator of Bitcoin, but that he had also worked for him.

On December 9, hours after Wired certified that Wright was indeed Nakamoto, the Australian Federal Police raided his home, and afterwards stating the “[the] matter is unrelated to recent media reporting regarding the digital currency Bitcoin.”

Afterwards, Wright deleted his internet presence until May of 2020, when he stepped forward and revealed himself on Twitter as the creator of the digital currency Bitcoin, and claimed he had the proof to back up his statement. Then, amid a torrent of skepticism, Wright retracted his statement and did not offer the “extraordinary proof” he claimed to have, stating that he did “not have the courage” to prove his identity.

Craig Wright, Image from CCN.

Satoshi Nakamoto Net Worth

In an era where information is widespread, Satoshi Nakamoto has managed to maintain his identity a complete secret. So why is uncovering Nakamoto’s identity so important? If Nakamoto is indeed a single individual, then he or she owns approximately 5% of the world’s Bitcoin supply, placing him or her as the 52nd richest person in the world as of December 12th.

The implications of this wealth are considerable, beyond even the real world implications. If Satoshi Nakamoto were ever to sell the rumored 980,000 Bitcoins in his or her possession (currently worth over $3.9 billion at today’s price, as of 18th March 2020 ), the price of Bitcoin could potentially become more volatile than it already is.

Powerful Potential Enemies

A quote that is attributed to Mayer Amschel Rothschild goes like this, “Permit me to issue and control the money of a nation, and I care not who makes its laws!”

Like many famous quotes, the authenticity of the above statement is questionable.

On the other hand, the idea expressed is rock-solid. The ‘power-of-the-purse’ is one of the most important ideas in modern political ideology. Being able to control the issuance of a popular currency gives the controller extreme amounts of power.
Bitcoin undermines the idea of a central bank, or the involvement of centralized authorities at their most basic level. As the last decade has shown, the idea of decentralized money or political systems has been met with extreme opposition by many established organizations.

Satoshi Nakamoto wrote,

“The root problem with conventional currency is all the trust that’s required to make it work. The central bank must be trusted not to debase the currency, but the history of fiat currencies is full of breaches of that trust. Banks must be trusted to hold our money and transfer it electronically, but they lend it out in waves of credit bubbles with barely a fraction in reserve. We have to trust them with our privacy, trust them not to let identity thieves drain our accounts,” in their now-famous 2009 whitepaper.

In 2008 no one would have seen Satoshi Nakamoto as a threat to global socioeconomic system. Today, that probably isn’t true. Nations like China have banned cryptos outright, and the Western central banking cartel has been vocal in its opposition to widespread use of cryptos.

Whoever Satoshi Nakamoto is, they are likely wise to have dropped off the radar when they did. The idea that fiat money could be replaced with a system that marginalizes central authorities is extremely dangerous to the people that currently hold power.

Anyone who could act as a lightening-rod for a global decentralized society would probably face some pretty nasty blowback.

The Scaling Debate

Furthermore, there is significant debate as to the future of Bitcoin. Heated discussions have arisen due to some of the growing pains surrounding Bitcoin, particularly the issue of how to deal with an increase in transaction volume in the Bitcoin network. As the number of blocks increases, the Bitcoin network runs the risk of becoming overloaded.

One side of the debate wants to fundamentally change the Bitcoin node by increasing the block size, in order to allow the system to process transactions more quickly. The other side of the debate sees this as a betrayal of the original concept behind Bitcoin, arguing that this would lead to increased centralization.

Identifying Bitcoin’s true creator would create more certainty and could potentially lay down the following steps in Bitcoin’s ever growing development.

Conclusion

The Bitcoin community will be forced to coexist with the enigma that is Satoshi Nakamoto, whether they like it or not. There are a few ways that Satoshi Nakamoto could show that they are, in fact, the creator of Bitcoin, but convincing the entire crypto community will be a challenge.

Even if a plausible Satoshi came forward, they would probably have to deal with ongoing doubts from within the crypto community, and untold difficulties from the global power structure. The raid on Craig Wright by the AFP is a small taste of the legal morass that the real Satoshi Nakamoto would find themselves facing.

Ultimately, identifying Bitcoin’s creator may be a quixotic endeavor. His or her complete silence since the Spring of 2020 means it is likely we will never hear from them again. Nevertheless, Bitcoin, the open source digital currency created nearly a decade ago, will continue to in spite of this mystery.

Satoshi Nakamoto: 9 Interesting Facts You Need To Know

CoinSutra » Bitcoin » Satoshi Nakamoto: 9 Interesting Facts You Need To Know

Like the dramatic quest of Hollywood movie “Finding Nemo”, this quest of finding Satoshi Nakamoto – the inventor of Bitcoin – has also been dramatic.

It’s fascinating to see how Bitcoin has become a multi-billion dollar thing, yet the “Father of Bitcoin” is still missing.

Satoshi Nakamoto made the Bitcoin software in 2008 and made it open source in January 2009.

And in 2020, Satoshi Nakamoto disappeared.

No one even knows what pronoun to use (he, she, or they) while referring to Satoshi Nakamoto because it is still not clear whether he/she is a person or a group of people.

Interesting Satoshi Nakamoto Facts You Need To Know

Whomever Satoshi Nakamoto might be, there are some interesting facts about the entity that gave birth to this multi-billion dollar industry of cryptocurrencies.

Here are 9 interesting facts…

1. Why is “Satoshi Nakamoto” Famous?

The name ‘Satoshi Nakamoto’ is the pseudonym of the inventor of Bitcoin. In 2008, someone used this name and mailed the Bitcoin white paper to a cryptographic mailing list.

This mailing list contained renowned people who believed in decentralization and cryptography.

That’s why this name is so famous.

As is apparent from the name, it’s assumed that he was a Japanese man, but his flawless use of English in the white paper raises doubts about this conclusion.

2. What is Satoshi Nakamoto Net Worth ?

It is believed that Satoshi Nakamoto owns 1 million bitcoins (or more) which makes his present net worth at the time of writing this article to be $2.6 billion.

In 2009 January, Satoshi mined the Genesis block, and in 2020, he officially stopped communicating. Between this period, the bitcoins came into existence exist on the blockchain ledger, but they have not been used or spent. This proves how much Satoshi owns.

1 million BTC is a huge number which, if dumped suddenly, could wreak havoc on the crypto market. That’s why Bitcoin has also earned the title of being a “Ponzi scheme”- because the speculative founder owns a significant share.

3. Satoshi’s T-Shirts

The anonymity of Bitcoin’s founder has led to a mushrooming of a totally new merchandising concept. Now you can buy T-Shirts with Satoshi Nakamoto things printed on them.

  • I am Satoshi Nakamoto.
  • Who is Satoshi Nakamoto?
  • Where in the world is Satoshi Nakamoto?

You can buy one for yourself from e-commerce sites like Zazzle and Teespring.

4. Satoshi Nakamoto is Possibly A Group Of Companies

Some even suggest that Samsung, Toshiba, Nakamichi, and Motorola together created Bitcoin, as you can tell from their names:

  • Samsung and Toshiba together makes —- Satoshi
  • Nakamichi and Motorola together makes —- Nakamoto

However, there is no official proof for such a conclusion.

5. Satoshi Nakamoto is Possibly Nick Szabo

Nick Szabo, a US computer scientist, and cryptographer is considered by some to be the founder of Bitcoin. Nick coined the concept of digital currency for the digital age by creating “Bit Gold“. Bit Gold was the ancestor of Bitcoin. However, it was not used by the masses because of limitations.

After analysis of Satoshi’s white paper, a blogger concluded that Nick Szabo was Satoshi Nakamoto. but Nick has never accepted this hypothesis.

6. Is Craig Steven Wright Satoshi Nakamoto?

Craig Wright, an Australian Entrepreneur, claimed to the BBC on 2nd May 2020 to be the inventor of Bitcoin. However, when examined by core Bitcoin developers like Peter Todd, Craig was unable to provide any acceptable supporting evidence for such a claim.

Though initially, he said he would come back with relevant evidence, he failed to do so, and said on his blog that he was “sorry” and “didn’t have the courage” to continue.

7. Satoshi Nakamoto is Possibly Dorian Nakamoto

In March 2020, another speculation came on the identity of Satoshi. A news source claimed that they had found Satoshi, and he lived in California, USA.

His full name, as reported, was Dorian Prentice Satoshi Nakamoto. He was a physicist and a systems engineer who had recently been laid off by the government.

Later on, the person identified denied all such claims and said he is not the Nakamoto which everyone has been searching for.

8. Satoshi Nakamoto is Possibly Hal Finney

Hal was a cryptographer even before his involvement with Bitcoin. He was on the mailing list that received Satoshi Nakamoto’s Bitcoin white paper.

Hal claimed that he had been communicating with Satoshi to support his testing, which led to the speculative conclusion that he himself was Satoshi.

Hal’s writing style also closely resembles that of Satoshi’s in the Bitcoin white paper. The suspicion evaporated when he showed his email conversation with Satoshi, but that could just be a diversion tactic.

Fun fact: Hal was the first person to receive a Bitcoin transaction from Satoshi on January 12, 2009, after Satoshi mined the genesis block on 3rd January 2009 at 18:15:05 GMT.

9. Fast Company Found Satoshi Nakamoto

An employee of Fast Company, a media brand, said that Neal King, Vladimir Oksman, and Charles Bry were the group of people that created Bitcoin. This employee proved it by searching unique phrases in Satoshi’s white paper.

They even patented the phrase which appears on the Bitcoin white paper “computationally impractical to reverse”.

However, all of them have publically denied such allegations.

The Anonymity of Satoshi Nakamoto

Whatever anyone may say or think, the anonymity factor of Satoshi Nakamoto has proven to be healthy for Bitcoin.

But there’s still a big mystery here:

  • Where is Satoshi Nakamoto?
  • What is Satoshi doing?
  • Why is Satoshi hiding?

No one knows the truth.

I would like to end this article by quoting two very early adopters of Bitcoin, Erik Voorhees and Roger Ver (two people who are definitely worth following on Twitter).

Bitcoin is the most important invention in the history of the world since the internet.”

Can we take a moment to reflect on the fact that the Bitcoin protocol STILL hasn’t been hacked? One of the greatest comp sci accomplishments

This shows how important Bitcoin, blockchain technology, and of course, Satoshi Nakamoto all are!

And yes, Bitcoin has become more important than a single individual, but we would all love to solve this mystery once and for all.

If you know any more interesting facts that I have missed in this article, then do let me know in the comments below.

And if you liked this post, don’t forget to share it!

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An award-winning blogger with a track record of 10+ years. An international speaker and author who loves blockchain and crypto world.

After discovering about decentralized finance and with his background of Information technology, he made his mission to help others learn and get started with it via CoinSutra.

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