Australian Says He Created Bitcoin; Some Doubtful

A Bitcoin (virtual currency) paper wallet with QR codes and a coin are seen in an illustration picture taken at La Maison du Bitcoin in Paris, France

Claims by an Australian computer scientist and businessman that he is the inventor of the digital currency Bitcoin are being met with some skepticism.

The BBC reported Craig Wright provided the media outlet with technical proof he possesses the original programming known only to Bitcoin’s true creator.  The BBC also reported “prominent members” of the Bitcoin community, including the co-founder of the Bitcoin Foundation, have come forward and confirmed his claim.

Wright also told The Economist and GQ magazines he is the currency’s founder.

The Economist said Monday the 45-year-old Australian “could well be Mr. Nakamoto, but that important questions remain.”

While some in the digital currency world believe Wright’s claims are valid, others are expressing doubt.

Wright declined requests from The Economist to provide additional proof he is the founder. On its website, The Economist said “nagging questions remain” about his claim. And others in the tech community have expressed skepticism on online forums like Reddit.

Global currency

Bitcoins were introduced in 2009 by a person identifying himself as Satoshi Nakamoto, and quickly became an acceptable form of global currency despite not being backed by a government or central bank. The technology magazine Wired said the total value of all bitcoins has risen to nearly $5 billion.

Australian authorities raided Wright’s home in December after Wired suggested he was the mysterious Bitcoin creator Nakamoto, and personally holds as much as $450 million worth of bitcoins.

Walter Metuth

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