[cryptography] Nirvana

Nico Williams nico at cryptonector.com
Fri Sep 23 11:09:47 EDT 2011

On Thu, Sep 22, 2011 at 7:46 PM, James A. Donald <jamesd at echeque.com> wrote:
> In order to shop, one needs a third party mediating transactions
> *THEY* should issue certificates.  The Visa certificate should signify "This
> merchant is trusted by Visa to accept Visa."

That'd be nice, but since the financial system ultimately has to make
payments work between any pair of peers, this doesn't work -- Visa (or
whoever) cannot attest to the trustworthiness of everyone.  Also, what
if we had real cryptographic money, with anonymity?  In other words:
the payments system cannot be the trusted third party for everything.
The financial industry could be/have a trusted third party for
authenticating its members to their customers (and prospective


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