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If there's one thing that's nearly impossible to do these days, it's to remain anonymous. This is doubly true if you are someone who has managed to create an invention that has caused a massive tech revolution and created a whole financial system around it.
To a point, the sheer possibility that this could happen seems surreal. Realistically, if anyone told you that this happened in the plot of a movie, you probably would have assumed it was one of those plots that is just too unreal to possibly be based on a true story.
It's this very storyline that sparked one of the strangest mysteries about cryptocurrency: figuring out who is Satoshi Nakamoto in real life.
Who is Satoshi Nakamoto, and why do people know his name?
Satoshi Nakamoto is the person (or people) who invented Bitcoin. Satoshi Nakamoto was the person who programmed Bitcoin, wrote the whitepapers behind the concept, and also issued out documents about how Bitcoin was supposed to work.
By creating Bitcoin, Satoshi Nakamoto did more than just solve the "double spending" problem that many peer-to-peer networks had. He created the world's first digital currency and started a wildfire of innovation.
Satoshi's wealth, too, is the stuff of legend. If he is a single individual, then he is one of the most secretive, elusive billionaires in the world due to the amount of Bitcoins he owns alone.
Why do people want to know Satoshi's identity?
There are a number of reasons why people want to uncover Satoshi's real identity. Many tax groups want to collect taxes from him, if he's not paying them already. Companies want to speak to him because of the potential profit they could gain from doing so.
Of course, the mystery alone is reason enough for some to want to figure out who he is. Everyone loves a good mystery, after all.
Who is Satoshi Nakamoto, according to Satoshi Nakamoto?
Believe it or not, Satoshi once came up with a persona of his own to try to cover his tracks on the Dark Web. He claimed to be a man who lived in Japan who was born in 1975.
However, evidence suggests that he's lying about this. If Satoshi really is Japanese, then why does he speak perfect English? Moreover, why isn't Bitcoin's documentation found in Japanese?
Satoshi is known for posting on forums using British English slang like "bloody hard." Chances are, he's not who he says he is. So, who is he, really?
There were people who knew Satoshi in real life who admitted that the name was a pseudonym.
At the very early beginnings of Bitcoin, Satoshi had helpers who promoted Bitcoin and also took the reins of much of Bitcoin's work. One such person was a programmer by the name of Gavin Andresen.
Those who exchanged emails with Satoshi won't say who he is, but did say that he was a very quirky, paranoid person. Clearly, Satoshi knew how powerful Bitcoin would become—and also possibly believed some of the Dark Web horror stories you hear.
By 2010, Satoshi Nakamoto, the very inventor of Bitcoin, decided it was time to move onto other things. He bid his followers adieu, and told them that they'd be in good hands with Gavin.
Despite Andresen being mostly in charge of the cryptocurrency, people still wondered who Satoshi really was. And, really, who wouldn't?
Let's take a look at the rumors dealing with this mystery.
There are a lot of people who believe they know who is Satoshi Nakamoto, most of which is based on evidence they found while scouring the net for the mysterious inventor's identity. Some of the biggest names to be linked to the infamous pseudonym include:
- Hal Finney. Finney is one of the earliest adopters of Bitcoin and actually wrote papers that outlined the precursor to Bitcoin. Finney's writing style also closely matches Satoshi's.
- Nick Szabo. Much like Hal Finney, Nick Szabo's writing is very similar to Satoshi's. The programmer is known for publishing a paper on "bit gold" before Bitcoin was invented, and is known for using pseudonyms online.
- Craig Wright. This Australian programmer has repeatedly shown very strong ties to Bitcoin—and to a point, seems to want to be known as the guy who invented Bitcoin. One hacker actually broke into Wright's email and claimed Satoshi was a pseudonym between him and a man called David Kleiman. However, this was later debunked.
- Neal King, Vladimir Oksman, and Charles Bry. This trio was uncovered thanks to their application for a patent that used phrases strikingly similar to Bitcoin's whitepapers.
No matter who is uncovered, the answer always ends up being a dead end.
Every single major investigation has proven to lead to dead ends and red herrings. For sleuths, it's been aggravating to say the least. After all, it's natural to want to know who is Satoshi Nakamoto if you have been searching for him for ages.
However, there seems to be one candidate that is just a little uncanny. His name is Dorian. Dorian Nakamoto.
What about Dorian Nakamoto?
International headlines broke out when researchers found a man named Dorian Nakamoto in Japan. Originally born Satoshi Nakamoto, Dorian was a Japanese-American man living in California.
When asked about Bitcoin, he stated, "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."
Later on, Dorian changed his story, claiming that he never even heard of cryptocurrency before. For many people, this confirmed that Dorian could be Satoshi. However, it was never officially confirmed.
What's interesting about Dorian is his background.
Along with being a Japanese man who was born with the name Satoshi, Dorian Nakamoto has another interesting tidbit that raises eyebrows. He was a former military scientist who specialized in programming.
This is interesting, considering that the Dark Web is often alleged to be a military project. Could it be that Bitcoin is a government-run experiment dealing with commerce? If you look at facts about the Dark Web, this might make you wonder.
Oddly enough, it seems like there are groups who know who Satoshi Nakamoto is.
Unsurprisingly, there have been a number of government agencies who have stepped in to uncover the secret billionaire's name. Among them is the IRS, who allegedly know Satoshi's true identity. However, due to a confidentiality agreement, they are not willing to uncover the person's identity.
So, who is Satoshi Nakamoto?
We don't know. We might never know. However, Satoshi has become a symbol of Bitcoin, and the strangely twisted beauty of internet anonymity as a result of the mystery he, she, or they wield.