Craig Steven Wright

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Craig Steven Wright
Born October 1970 (age 47–48)[1]
Brisbane, Australia
Nationality Australian
Alma mater Charles Sturt University
Occupation Computer scientist

Craig Steven Wright (born October 1970)[2] is an Australian computer scientist and businessman. He claims to be the real person behind the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto—the creator of Bitcoin—a claim that is disputed within the Bitcoin community.

Early life and education

Wright graduated from high school in 1987 from Padua College in Brisbane.[3] Wright was an adjunct lecturer in computer science[4] and researcher at Charles Sturt University, where he was working on his second PhD entitled "The quantification of Information systems risk".[5][6][7][8] He completed 18 SANS Institute courses and was the world's first person to receive GIAC certification in Compliance and Audits,[9] and was a SANS Institute Mentor.[10] He holds GSEMalware and GSECompliance certifications, among others, from GIAC.[11][12][13]

Wright says his PhD is in theology:[14] comparative religious and classical studies, achieved in 2003 with a dissertation titled “Gnarled roots of a creation theory”.[3] The University from which he claimed to have achieved another PhD, this time in computer science, told Forbes he had been awarded two master's degrees, but not a doctorate.[15]

Wright has written or co-written several books, including The IT Regulatory and Standards Compliance Handbook: How to Survive Information Systems Audit and Assessments.[16] Wright has been a trustee of the Uniting Church in New South Wales.[3][17][18]

Career and businesses

Wright worked in information technology for various companies, including OzEmail, K-Mart and the Australian Securities Exchange,[9] as well as working as a security consultant for Mahindra & Mahindra.[19][20] He designed the architecture for possibly the world's first online casino, Lasseter's Online (based in Alice Springs, Northern Territory), which went online in 1999.[21][22][23][24] He was the information systems manager for the accounting firm BDO Kendalls.[9][25][26]

In 2004, Wright was convicted of contempt of court by the Supreme Court of New South Wales. He was sentenced to 28 days in jail for breaching an injunction that prevented him from approaching customers of DeMorgan Information Security Systems, which he resigned from in 2003. The sentence was suspended on condition of performing 250 hours of community service. After appealing the decision, the ruling was upheld in 2005 and also in a subsequent appeal to the High Court of Australia in 2006.[27][28]

Wright was the CEO of the technology firm Hotwire Preemptive Intelligence Group (Hotwire PE),[29][30][31] which planned to launch Denariuz Bank, the world's first Bitcoin-based bank, though it encountered regulatory difficulties with the Australian Tax Office and failed in 2014.[32][33] Wright is the founder of cryptocurrency company DeMorgan Ltd., which received $54 million AUD in tax incentives via AusIndustry.[34][35][36] He is also the founder of the cybersecurity and computer forensics company Panopticrypt Pty Ltd.[37][38][39]


In December 2015, two parallel investigations by Wired and Gizmodo alleged that Wright may have been the inventor of Bitcoin.[40][41] Subsequent reporting, however, raised serious concerns that Wright was engaged in an elaborate hoax.[42][43][44]

Hours after Wired published their allegations, Wright's home in Gordon, New South Wales and an associated business premise in Ryde, Sydney were raided by the Australian Federal Police.[45][46][47][48] According to the AFP, the raid was part of an Australian Tax Office investigation.[49][50]

On May 2, 2016, Wright publicly claimed to be the creator of Bitcoin.[51][52][53] This claim was corroborated by Bitcoin Foundation Founding Director Jon Matonis in a blog post,[54] stating "For cryptographic proof in my presence, Craig signed and verified a message using the private key from block #1 newly-generated coins and from block #9 newly-generated coins (the first transaction to Hal Finney)." The Bitcoin Core project released a statement on Twitter saying "There is currently no publicly available cryptographic proof that anyone in particular is Bitcoin's creator."[55][better source needed] Bitcoin developer Jeff Garzik agreed that evidence provided by Wright does not prove anything, and security researcher Dan Kaminsky in his blog concluded Wright's claim was a scam.[56] Jordan Pearson and Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai said that "Wright simply reused an old signature from a bitcoin transaction performed in 2009 by Satoshi."[56]

Afterwards, Wright said that he decided not to present any further "evidences" to prove that he is the creator of Bitcoin. In a message posted on his website, Wright wrote:

I believed that I could do this. I believed that I could put the years of anonymity and hiding behind me. But, as the events of this week unfolded and I prepared to publish the proof of access to the earliest keys, I broke. I do not have the courage. I cannot. When the rumors began, my qualifications and character were attacked. When those allegations were proven false, new allegations have already begun. I know now that I am not strong enough for this. I know that this weakness will cause great damage to those that have supported me, and particularly to Jon Matonis and Gavin Andresen. I can only hope that their honour and credibility is not irreparably tainted by my actions. They were not deceived, but I know that the world will never believe that now. I can only say I’m sorry. And goodbye.[57]

Earlier in an exclusive interview with BBC, Wright had promised to give "extraordinary proof to an extraordinary claim."[58]


  1. Biggs, Tim (December 9, 2015). "Bitcoin's mysterious creator Satoshi Nakamoto could be Australian man Craig Steven Wright: report". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved December 9, 2015. 
  2. "Denariuz Ltd 08260048 company information". Company Database UK. 2015. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Thomsen, Simon (9 December 2015). "The incredible career of the Australian scientist suspected of creating Bitcoin". Business Insider. 
  4. "Craig S Wright". The Conversation. 2013. 
  5. "Effective Strategies to Manage People and Create Secure Low Risk Systems through Incentives That Work". Australian Computer Society. 2012. 
  6. "People – Advanced Networks Research Lab". Charles Sturt University. 
  7. Radvanovsky, Robert; Brodsky, Jacob, eds. (2013). Handbook of SCADA/Control Systems Security. CRC Press. p. xxiii. 
  8. Zia, Tanveer. "Research". Charles Sturt University. 
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 Pauli, Darren (22 August 2007). "Aussie achieves world's first audit certification". Computerworld. 
  10. "Audit 507: Auditing Networks, Perimeters & Systems". SANS Institute via The Internet Archive. 2008. Archived from the original on June 9, 2008. 
  11. Steinberg, Joseph (2011). Tipton, Harold F., ed. Official (ISC)2® Guide to the ISSMP® CBK®. CRC Press. p. ix. 
  12. "Craig Wright". Global Information Assurance Certification. 
  13. Wright, Craig S. (2008). "Requirements For Record Keeping and Document Destruction in a Digital World". Global Information Assurance Certification. 
  14. Kaminska, Izabella (31 March 2016). "Craig Wright’s upcoming big reveal". FT Alphaville. The Financial Times Ltd. Retrieved 10 April 2016. 
  15. Thomas Fox-Brewster (11 December 2015). "Time To Call A Hoax? Inconsistencies On 'Probable' Bitcoin Creator's PhD And Supercomputers Revealed". Forbes. 
  16. Wright, Craig S. (2008). The IT Regulatory and Standards Compliance Handbook: How to Survive Information Systems Audit and Assessments. Syngress. ISBN 9780080560175. 
  17. "Synod Standing Committee Minutes August 2010" (PDF). Uniting Church. p. 8. 
  18. "Mustard Seed Summer 2008" (PDF). Uniting Church via The Internet Archive. 2008. p. 2. Archived from the original (PDF) on March 20, 2012. 
  19. Swan, David (9 December 2015). "Alleged bitcoin founder cops a raid". The Australian. 
  20. Kleiman, Dave, ed. (2011). The Official CHFI Study Guide (Exam 312-49): for Computer Hacking Forensic Investigator. Syngress Publishing. p. vi. ISBN 9780080555713. 
  21. Liu, Dale, ed. (2009). Cisco Router and Switch Forensics: Investigating and Analyzing Malicious Network Activity. Syngress. p. ix. ISBN 9780080953847. 
  22. "The History of Online Gambling". Reviewed Casinos. Retrieved 6 May 2016. 
  23. Wilkinson, John (September 1999). "Gaming Commissions, Internet Gambling and Responsible Gambling" (PDF). Parliament of New South Wales. pp. 28–29. 
  24. Foreshew, Jennifer (29 August 2013). "Hunted 'must become hunter' to combat cyber crime" (PDF). The Australian via Charles Sturt University. 
  25. Wright, Craig; Kleiman, Dave; Sundhar R.S., Shayaam (2008). "Overwriting Hard Drive Data: The Great Wiping Controversy". In Sekar, R. Information Systems Security: 4th International Conference, ICISS 2008, Hyderabad, India, December 16–20, 2008, Proceedings. Springer Science & Business Media. p. 243. 
  26. Smith, Paul (27 February 2008). "Biometrics attracts few takers". CIO Magazine. 
  27. McDuling, John (2015-12-10). "Alleged bitcoin founder’s dealings with the ASX and News Ltd got him in trouble". The Age. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 2016-05-05. 
  28. Farrell, Paul; Hunt, Elle; Evershed, Nick (2015-12-09). "Who is Craig Wright and how likely is it that he's behind bitcoin?". The Guardian. Retrieved 2016-05-05. 
  29. "Hotwire Preemptive Intelligence Pty Limited" (PDF). McGrathNicol. 26 May 2014. 
  30. Hotwire Preemptive Intelligence. "Hotwire Preemptive Intelligence". Facebook. 
  31. McDuling, John; Sier, Jessica (9 December 2015). "Bitcoin founder 'could definitely' be Australian". The Canberra Times. 
  32. Mitchell, James (7 March 2014). "Bitcoin bank hits ATO roadblock". InvestorDaily. 
  33. Tay, Liz (12 February 2014). "Aussie Technologists Plan To Open The World's First Bitcoin-Based Bank This Year". Business Insider. 
  34. Farquhar, Peter (December 8, 2015). "The Australian who may have invented Bitcoin claimed to land $54M in taxpayer-funded rebates". Business Insider. Retrieved December 8, 2015. 
  35. Pedersen, Allan; Watts, Ramona (11 May 2015). "The Demorgan Ltd Group of Companies to Receive up to $54 Million from AusIndustry R&D Tax Rebate Sscheme" (PDF). DeMorgan Ltd. 
  36. Chirgwin, Richard (9 December 2015). "Bitcoin inventor Satoshi 'outed' as Aussie, then raided by cops – but NOT over BTC". The Register. 
  37. "About". Panopticrypt. January 2015. 
  38. Panopticrypt Cyber Security and Forensics (12 January 2015). "Panopticrypt Intro with Dr Craig Wright (full version)". YouTube. 
  39. "Big Data World Show 2013" (PDF). Akademi Pencegahan Rasuah Malaysia (Malaysia Anti Corruption Academy). 2013. p. 2. 
  40. Greenberg, Andy; Branwen, Gwern (December 8, 2015). "Bitcoin's Creator Satoshi Nakamoto Is Probably This Unknown Australian Genius". Wired. Retrieved December 8, 2015. 
  41. Biddle, Sam; Cush, Andy (December 8, 2015). "This Australian Says He and His Dead Friend Invented Bitcoin". Gizmodo. Retrieved December 8, 2015. 
  42. Greenberg, Andy (11 December 2015). "New Clues Suggest Craig Wright, Suspected Bitcoin Creator, May Be a Hoaxer". Wired. 
  43. Bustillos, Maria. "The Bizarre Saga of Craig Wright, the Latest "Inventor of Bitcoin"". The New Yorker. 
  44. Chanthadavong, Aimee (11 December 2015). "SGI denies links with alleged bitcoin founder Craig Wright". ZDNet. 
  45. Mihalcik, Carrie (10 December 2015). "Bitcoin whodunit leads to Oz". CNET. 
  46. "'Bitcoin founder's' Australia home raided by Sydney police". BBC News. 9 December 2015. 
  47. Johnson, Edward; Whitley, Angus (9 December 2015). "Police Raid Sydney Home of Man Who Reportedly Created Bitcoin". Bloomberg Businessweek. 
  48. Kaye, Byron (9 December 2015). "Australian police raid Sydney home of reported bitcoin creator". Reuters. 
  49. Hunt, Elle; Farrell, Paul (December 8, 2015). "Reported bitcoin 'founder' Craig Wright's home raided by Australian police". The Guardian. Retrieved December 8, 2015. 
  50. "Bitcoin mystery: Home of man believed to be currency founder raided". The Daily Telegraph. December 9, 2015. Retrieved December 9, 2015. 
  51. "Craig Wright Claims He's Bitcoin Creator Satoshi -- Experts Fear An Epic Scam". Forbes. 2 May 2016. Retrieved 2 May 2016. 
  52. "Craig Wright revealed as Bitcoin creator Satoshi Nakamoto". BBC. 2 May 2016. Retrieved 2 May 2016. 
  53. "Craig Steven Wright claims to be Satoshi Nakamoto. Is he?". Economist. 2 May 2016. Retrieved 2 May 2016. 
  54. "How I Met Satoshi". The Monetary Future. 2 May 2016. 
  55. "Bitcoin Core Project". Twitter. 
  56. 56.0 56.1 "Craig Wright's New Evidence That He Is Satoshi Nakamoto Is Worthless". Motherboard. 
  57. Wright, Craig Steven. "Craig Steven Wright's website". Craig Wright. Retrieved 5 May 2016. 
  58. "The Bitcoin affair: Craig Wright promises extraordinary proof". BBC. Retrieved 5 May 2016.