According to a post on the Reddit community r/bitcoin, an old file has been discovered that may be linked to Wikileaks whistleblower and founder Julian Assange. The encrypted 7zip file is in the output script of a transaction that took place on January 5, 2017 and was extracted at block height 446,713.
Speculation Surrounds the Purpose of the 7zip File Called ‘Julianassange.Txt’ Found in the Bitcoin Blockchain
Among the thousands of listings added to the Bitcoin blockchain via Ordinals, a 7zip file possibly linked to Wikileaks founder Julian Assange was recently discovered. A Reddit user going by the name “u/sprxzk34620” informed the r/bitcoin subreddit of the discovery. The message read: “An encrypted 7zip file possibly linked to Julian Assange is hidden on the Bitcoin blockchain.” The author also noted that the file could be obtained by merging the pubkhash segment of all output scripts for a specific transaction.
“The encrypted 7zip file contains a file named ‘Julianassange.txt’, but attempts to hack the file failed,” the Reddit user added. Commenters on the Reddit post questioned why Assange would add this to the Bitcoin blockchain and some referenced speculation that he created a “dead man’s switch”. “It could be an encrypted link to the Switch or files exposing secrets,” one person wrote. Others were dubious and said a zip file named “Julianassange.txt” looks like a hoax.
Coincidentally, the January 5, 2017 transaction with the 7zip file took place five days before Assange read the Bitcoin blockchain hash from block height 447,506 in a recorded video. At the time, many believed the whistleblower was using this tactic to prove he was alive. Although he is alive, Assange said he was not well while confined to the Ecuadorian Embassy in London.
“Don’t take cryptographic evidence as proof that I’m fine,” he stressed at the time. “I am not. I have been detained here for eight years. I have not been well all the time. Since then, Assange’s Ecuadorian asylum has been revoked and he was arrested on April 11, 2019, when the police raided the embassy.The contents of the 7zip file are unknown until someone manages to crack it, as it may not belong to or be associated with Assange at all.
The Reddit post written by u/sprxzk34620 ended with a heated discussion about whether adding arbitrary data to the Bitcoin blockchain through Ordinals was a legitimate practice, as it sparked controversy among some bitcoin advocates. “If everyone is going to post JPEGs of stupid cats on the blockchain, I can keep buying new hard drives for my node…F*** that shit**. Keep it compact folks,” one Redditor pointed out.
What do you think the contents of the encrypted 7zip file might reveal? Let us know your thoughts on this in the comments section below.
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