There has been a long list of figures who the press and online commenters have speculated are Satoshi Nakamoto, creator of Bitcoin. At one point, when Newsweek claimed Dorian Nakamoto, an unnamed individual left a cryptographic message stating, “I am not Dorian Nakamoto.” Many argued this in-and-of-itself does not prove Satoshi left the message. Read on to learn what Bitcoin developer Gavin Andresen would want to prove Satoshi’s true identity.
The sage continued in late 2015. Two well-known online technology websites published leaked documents purporting to prove Craig Steven Wright, an Australian man, is Satoshi Nakamoto, the founder of Bitcoin. What's weirder, Australian authorities searched Craig Steven Wright’s home shortly thereafter, apparently for unrelated tax purposes.
That story turned even stranger late this week as Wright - or representatives of the man - claimed he would soon be outing himself as Satoshi Nakamoto. Many are doubtful of Wright’s true identity as Nakamoto. He’s done some strange things, such as reaching out to some late-comers into the Bitcoin space.
Wright is due to make the announcement in the next two weeks. Wired and Gizmodo claimed him to be Satoshi in December 2015 citing leaked emails and documents insinuating Wright and colleague Dave Kleinman, who has since passed away, were co-inventors of Bitcoin. The source of the leak remains unknown. Wright has been mute on the topic. He deleted most of his social media presence shortly after the story was released.
Wright’s home in Sydney was raided by Australian federal police in relation to an Australian Tax Office investigation, but Wright and his family had reportedly moved to London by that time. A business office was also raided in Ryde, Sydney.
After four months of no further developments, The Financial Times is reporting that “conditional approaches are being made to media and other institutions in connection to an upcoming “big reveal” of Wright as Satoshi Nakamoto.”
According to the financial website, between the dates of April 7 to April 14 Wright will prove his identity cryptographically. Wright’s legal representatives are asking the individuals and institutions asked to follow strict embargoes before a “stage-managed” press conference.
Before Wired and Gizmodo released the leaks and documents purportedly proving Wright as Nakamoto, the documents and emails were “heavily circulated to rival media outlets by anonymous parties weeks ahead of its ultimate publication.”
Jon Matonis told FT Alphaville: “I have been contacted by a private group and I am under a strict NDA [non-disclosure agreement] and press embargo during due diligence phase.”
Gavin Andresen told FT Alphaville he would need to see the following to believe the hype:
A message signed with the same PGP key Satoshi used back in 2010. (…but his computer could have been hacked)
A message signed with keys from early Bitcoin blocks (…but his wallet could have been stolen).
Email or private forum posts he sent to me in 2010 (… but email could have been hacked).
A conversation about technical stuff, ideally via email, so I can see if it feels like the same person I communicated with in 2010.
FT wants to know: “Will Craig Wright be the one to shepherd his flock to consensus and safety? Only the community can decide." Wright has a long history in technology, with a decorated career.
As CEO of the technology firm Hotwire Preemptive Intelligence Group, he led Denariuz Bank, which attempted to be the world’s first Bitcoin bank. It failed in 2014 likely due to regulatory burdens.
Of course, what's to come is unknown. This could be one elaborate April Fool's Joke.
Images from Shutterstock and Facebook/IBT.