I think it’s time we take a look at the Godfathers of privacy through the use of cryptography.
They call themselves the Cypherpunks.
This cypherpunk movement took root in the 1980s and is centered around the idea of establishing cryptographically secured methods of ensuring privacy.
If you want to learn more about this movement, reading the Cypherpunk Manifestois a fine place to start.
It was written in 1993 by Eric Hughes and has some powerful statements.
It was written about 25 years ago but it is becoming increasingly more relevant as time moves on and our privacy is increasingly being eroded.
Here are some key parts of the Cypherpunks manifesto that I’d like to you all to hear:
“Privacy is not secrecy.”
“Privacy is the power to selectively reveal oneself to the world.”
This piece goes on to speak of how individuals should have the right to selectively reveal their identities in this day in age when electronic transactions and communications are now the norm. It also mentions how they are achieving privacy through uses of anonymous email that uses digital signatures and also interestingly enough, mentions electronic money. Keep in mind that this was written a good 16 years before the Genesis block of Bitcoin.
Towards the end of this written piece we are introduced to their motives for writing code that will accomplish this as well as their desire to keep this code open for others to study and learn from. (Hint: Open Source Philosophy)
Over and over Eric speaks about being aware of the importance of maintaining your own privacy and shows that decentralizing their information and making it open for others to view and learn from will only help to spread and ultimately secure the future for cryptographically secured methods of communications and transactions.