Australian IT Consultant Craig Wright Claims He Is Bitcoin Founder

craig wrightThe much speculated identity of the creator of the digital currency bitcoin was recently revealed after Australian IT consultant Craig Wright provided proof this week that he was indeed Satoshi Nakamato, the pseudonym adopted by the creator.

Wright, a 45 year old IT security specialist from Sydney made the claim in a blog post and provided proof to premier media agencies including the BBC, the Economist and GQ to back up his claim. His proof was sending across the same block of bitcoin that Nakamoto sent to fellow developer Hal Finney as a part of the currency’s first transaction in 2009.

Jon Maton who is one of the founding directors of the Bitcoin Foundation has backed Wright’s claim, saying that after reviewing the proof available from three perspectives, namely cryptographic, technical and social he is convinced that Craig Wright is Nakamato.

BBC News

Two online magazines, Wired and Gizmodo had named Wright as Nakamoto in December 2015 based on leaked documents including email, transcripts and financial records. His house in Sydney was raided on the same day by Australian tax authorities in an investigation unrelated to bitcoin.Wright has been associated with several IT companies in Australia as an IT director but severed relations with most of them mid-2015.

Wright said he was making his identity public to avoid misinformation and allay fears surrounding use of bitcoin. In a statement, Wright said,

I care so passionately about my work, and also to dispel any negative myths and fears about bitcoin. I cannot allow the misinformation that has been spread to impact the future of bitcoin and the blockchain.

Launched as an idea in an academic white paper by Nakamato in 2008 and as an actual currency in 2009, bitcoin has gained increasing acceptance as a payment currency. There are currently close to 15.5 million bitcoins in circulation, with Nakamoto owning close to a million which would give the founder a net worth of almost US$ 450 million when valued at the current rate.

Nakamoto remained involved in the development of bitcoin in collaboration with others till April 2011, after which he stepped away citing other interests. Wright said that his pseudonym was a tribute to Tominaga Nakamoto a Japanese philosopher and merchant who advocated free trade.

However questions remain, with many still sceptical like David Glance an associate professor of computer science at the University of Western Australia who has worked with Wright previously. Glance wants absolute proof before he accepts the fact that Wright is Nakamoto.