Asked by Anonymous
Things I drew for /co/ today.
There’s some thing going around trying to promote Bitcoin on Black Friday, talking about this cool “anonymous” currency. There’s, however, one big detail they’re leaving out.
The way Bitcoin works is by farming out proof of transactions to a bunch of people running an *@Home-type client. Through some majjjyck voodoo I don’t understand running this kind of processing will move bitcoins around and net a small fee for the processor. The data set that they process is called the Blockchain.
However, since processing is done by many volunteers, this means that the Blockchain is not private. Therefore,
Bitcoin is not private.
Anyone can view any bitcoin transaction, and view all the transactions associated with an address. Governments can subpoena BTC-real money converters to associate addresses to credit cards.
For quick reference, here’s a list of donors to The Pirate Bay. You can see everyone who donated, and see where the donated BTC ended up.
BTC is a curiosity emerging, but it’s not private or untracked. At all.