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Author Topic: Adding escheat feature to the protocol.  (Read 608 times)
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August 01, 2012, 08:01:13 PM

No, the purpose is not to let governemt transfer your funds to themselves, but to protect your assets if you lose your keys or die.

Algorithm is a follows.

1.   Publish/broadcast an escheat enabling transaction, specifying your source bitcoin address, timeout period and receiver bitcoin address, to the block chain, signing with your private key, etc.  Nothing actually happens at this point other than the transaction being logged in the block chain.

    a.  "timeout period" is measured from the last time the source bitcoin address was involved in a transaction, including an escheat       enabling transaction.

2.   After the timeout period, still nothing automatically happens, but now the owner of the receiver bitcoin address is enabled, after this point, to transfer the funds from the source address to the receiver address, at his leasure using his private key, etc.

In order to escheat your funds the escheat receiver looks for

   a.  relevant escheat enabling transaction
   b.  looks up the timeout period.
   c.  looks up the time elapsed since the last transaction
   d.  If c > b then the receiver publishes/broadcasts a "pull" transaction to grab the funds into the receiver bitcoin address.

It should be noted that an escheat is not automatic.  The receiver needs to pull the funds.   This is to prevent unintentional escheats after the fact and possibly losing your funds through escheat.

The intent of this is so you can set up an escheat receiver address and keep it separate, or leave ownership of it with an agent or recovery agency, etc.   If you lose access to your funds, after a certain amount of time you can use your recovery address (or your agent can) to recover your funds.  If you touch your funds regulary, any hired agent has no access to them unless and until the timeout period has elapsed.

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