Cody Wilson, founder of Defense Distributed, in the crowdfunding campaign video for a new Bitcoin wallet.
Dark Wallet is an app for storing, sending, and receiving Bitcoin, with some extra security features built in. As law enforcement cracks down on services using Bitcoin to evade authorities — the recent bust of the underground drug market Silk Road being the most notable example — Wilson and his co-founder Amir Taaki decided it was important to add new protections.
To accomplish this, Taaki and developer Pablo Martin built a protocol called "trustless mixing." This tactic, which will be built into Dark Wallet, allows a group of Bitcoin users to mix their coins together into one big transaction before it is encoded into the "blockchain," the currency's public ledger.
Some Bitcoin advocates believe the virtual currency should be overseen by the government. Government agencies around the world have shown an increasing interest in regulating the currency, and venture capitalists are investing millions in businesses built on Bitcoin.
Wilson believes the currency should operate entirely outside of government
Wilson and his collaborators at the digital anarchist collective Unsystem believe the currency should operate entirely outside of government. "The basic opposition is usually either personal — that I or 'we' are arrogant, or ideological — that Bitcoin 'needs' the legitimization mechanisms of institutional or state power," Wilson tells The Verge in an email. "Pretty tired and familiar by now. That last bit of messaging is the one I hope to blunt."
Dark Wallet will be finished in early 2014, the founders say. "Bitcoin is what they fear it is. A way to leave ... to make a choice," Wilson intones in a Fight Club-esque video. "There's a system approaching perfection. Just in time for our disappearance."