As of December of 2017, Satoshi Nakamoto was said to be worth over $19 billion. Making Nakamoto the 44th richest person in the world. Here is the thing though... Satoshi Nakamoto doesn't exist.
Or maybe "he" does. And only the National Security Agency knows.
For those who are not familiar or are apathetic — Bitcoin is a form of electronic cash that can be exchanged on a network between two peers without the inclusion of a bank, a government, or any sort of middleman at all. It has no central holding house and is not administered by a single authority. Making Bitcoin a truly decentralized monetary system.
Bitcoin is validated and safeguarded by a process called blockchain. Blockchain prevents double-spending. Double-spending is the major problem associated with predecessor cryptocurrencies. Unlike Bitcoin and Blockchain, the concept of double-spending is easy for most laymen to grasp.
In earlier versions of cryptocurrency, there was a flaw that allowed the same digital token to be spent more than once. Because every type of currency (virtual or otherwise) is valuable due to its rarity or scarcity, there must be a limited amount of a currency in order for it to be useful. The flaw allowed double-spending in earlier cryptocurrencies meant a digital token could be copied. The ability to copy a token means any number of tokens can be produced. Destroying scarcity, in turn eliminating value.
The process for how Blockchain overcomes the problem of double-spending is a bit more complex than we’ll discuss here. For more information, feel free to check out this video.
Back To Satoshi Nakamoto...
"Satoshi Nakamoto" is said to possess over $19 billion in U.S. dollars worth of Bitcoin currency. That makes sense, right? Satoshi created the currency and the system which protects it, so clearly they are entitled to a huge portion of the existing currency.
Except there is no Satoshi Nakamoto!
Someone invented Bitcoin and Blockchain. And that someone was an interactive online presence for years. However, while there is an individual man in California who could conceivably be tied to such programming who has the names Satoshi and Nakamoto in his own given name--he doesn't appear to be the mysterious inventor of Bitcoin.
Why does it matter who Satoshi Nakamoto is or whether or not we ever find out? In most ways, it doesn’t. If we knew who the real inventor of Bitcoin and Blockchain was, there would be interviews, book deals, job offers, collaboration requests, appearances, charities, movies and corporations to deal with. Not to mention tax implications.
The secrecy surrounding the real identity of Satoshi Nakamoto is more altruistic in nature.
The point of Bitcoin is to purify the exchange of currency by eliminating the middleman. Creating an atmosphere in which peers can directly exchange currency independent of a centralized system and outside of the authority of a ruling figure.
As such, the person or persons behind Satoshi Nakamoto seem(s) to also believe the greatest way they could bring legitimacy and trust to the Bitcoin system was to ensure it did not seem to be controlled by a single person or group.
In essence, Satoshi Nakamoto appears to have given modern society a tremendous gift completely out of belief in a philosophy.
The idea that Nakamoto created the system for the greater good rather than for personal gain is only supported by the fact that none of the Bitcoin currency that Nakamoto claimed for themselves early in the process has been spent.
Additionally, Nakamoto didn’t even claim all of the early currency to which they had access.
Satoshi Nakamoto never claimed any of the fame or prestige to which they were entitled.
Never took advantage of any of the fortunes they amassed in doing so.