Satoshi Nakamoto — The Bitcoin (BTC) Enigma
Ten years ago, sequestered away from the outside world, Satoshi Nakamoto, the individual or group responsible for Bitcoin, mined the first block ever on the nascent network. And while the network’s origins were nothing spectacular — as rumor has it that the creator processed blocks with a mere desktop, which probably ran loud and was poorly insulated — a revolutionary force was set in motion nonetheless.
Bitcoin’s creator acknowledged the potential paradigm-shifting power of their innovation, transcoding a pertinent headline from British newspaper The Times into the Genesis Block’s coinbase — the input value for the block generating transaction. Nakamoto never explicitly stated the reason behind the headline, which read “Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks,” but many believers in this innovation claim that it was an evident jab at centralized financial systems. So, it has become widely agreed that this wasn’t any old headline snagged from one of the internet’s thousands of RSS feeds, that’s for sure.
Yet, while Bitcoin has undoubtedly had a resounding impact on global finance, and will likely continue to move into the future, no one knows who or what exactly Satoshi is. Still, Worth Magazine, an American publication centered around the business and finance world, mentioned him/her/they in their “Power 100” list for 2018. More specifically, they named the Bitcoin creator as the 44th most powerful person in finance.
Nakamoto was placed in front of Steven Cohen, Bernie Sanders, Presidential hopeful Elizabeth Warren, Kelly Loeffler (wed to the CEO of the Intercontinental Exchange) of Bakkt, Carl Icahn, Nasdaq’s Adena Friedman, Bitcoin advocate Mohamed El-Erian, pro-crypto Marc Andreessen, prominent business journalist Andrew Ross Sorkin, Mark Zuckerberg, and dozens of others on this well-respected list of influential heavyweights.
The Search Continues
And while Satoshi has covered their tracks impeccably, disguising himself as a middle-aged man hailing from Japan — hence “Nakamoto” — and using certain operational-security tricks to remove any risk of exposure, some have still sought to find the mysterious Bitcoin creator.
As reported by Ethereum World News previously, Daniel Oberhouse, a reporter for Vice’s Motherboard outlet, asked the U.S. FBI and CIA about Satoshi’s true identity, as many tin-foil hatters (conspiracists) believe that these governmental agencies spawned the Bitcoin project or know something about the creator. After a month of deliberation, the CIA reportedly responded, and wrote a very nebulous answer that likely got Oberhouse’s mind racing. The entity remarked:
This request has been rejected, with the agency stating that it can neither confirm nor deny the existence of the requested documents.
Just a month later, German Neff, joining hands with like-minded individuals through the #findsatoshi hashtag, launched the “International Search For Bitcoin Creator Satoshi Nakamoto,” The campaign, run on a platform like Kickstarter, funnily named Boomstarter, has raised 12.5 million rubles (~$190,000), which will purportedly fund the hiring of independent detective agencies in the U.S., Japan, and Europe to find the figure.
Interestingly, some have abstained from searching for Satoshi. More specifically, some believe the shadowy figure is likely dead, captured by the government, or hidden in a place so secret that no one would have any clue where to find them. Moreover, other cryptocurrency diehards have kept their distance from such a search, as finding the Bitcoin figurehead essentially undermines the very nature of decentralization and pseudonymity itself.
Title Image Courtesy of Noah Silliman Via Unsplash