Who controls Bitcoin? How it works!
Bitcoin is based on a decentralized peer-to-peer network.
Therefore no institutions, organizations, persons, governments or companies control Bitcoin.
Bitcoin is not a company, has no address, no headquarter, no customer service.
You can’t write Bitcoin a letter, you cannot call Bitcoin or send an email.
In a nutshell: Bitcoin is a network of computers, distributed around the world. These computers are running software that validates Bitcoin transactions and records the public ledger.
And again: Bitcoin is not a bank! Bitcoin is a network.
Who can stop Bitcoin?
You could ask now: Google, Facebook, and Amazon have thousands of computers distributed around the world. Couldn’t they take over Bitcoin with their computing power?
Simple answer: No. Their computing power is still very small compared to Bitcoin.
But what about Supercomputers owned by Agencies/Governments/IBM etc?
According to Wikipedia, the most powerful supercomputers in China have 93 PetaFLOPS. The US supercomputers have 122 PetaFLOPS. However, the Bitcoin Network has a Network Hashrate of 80,704 PetaFLOPS according to Bitcoincharts. This means that the Bitcoin Network is 375 times faster compared to all the supercomputers from the USA and China together.
Bitcoin is an incorruptible machine network driven by mathematics. It can not be manipulated without the consent of the community – developers, miners, and Bitcoin HODLERs.
Therefore nobody controls Bitcoin. No government can stop it, no jurisdiction can seize it. To stop a few or all Bitcoin servers in a country is generally speaking possible. However, this will not stop Bitcoin. If you want to stop Bitcoin, you need to stop the internet. The entire internet. Worldwide.
It took many years for the politicians to accept this.
The world that Satoshi Nakamoto, author of the Bitcoin whitepaper, envisioned and others are building is an unstoppable force.Rep. Patrick McHenry, Leader of the House Financial Services Committee
We should not attempt to deter this innovation, and governments cannot stop this innovation and those that have tried have already failed.Capitol Hill hearing July 2019
Later he mentioned at CNBC:
I think there’s no capacity to kill bitcoin. Even the Chinese with their firewall and their extreme intervention in their society could not kill bitcoin.
If nobody controls or can stop Bitcoin: What are the implications?
- Bitcoin is an immutable currency, where every transaction is final and absolute.
- Transactions and Bitcoin transfers cannot be canceled, withdrawn or stopped.
- This means, however: Mistakes, faults regarding the amounts transferred, the receiving Bitcoin address, etc. can not be corrected. By nobody. Never.
- If you lose your key, you lose your Bitcoin. Forever.
Nobody can help you, nobody can reset your key, nobody can send you a new password / key.