Sean Hastings

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Sean Hastings

Sean Hastings (born 1969) is an entrepreneur,[1] cypherpunk author,[2] and security expert.[3] He is best known for being the founding CEO of HavenCo, the world's first formal data haven.[4]


In 1997, Hastings worked on cryptographic protocols and tools free of U.S. cryptographic export restrictions with Vincent Cate, who started the International Conference on Financial Cryptography in Anguilla that same year.[5]

Hastings founded HavenCo in 2000, originally incorporating in his country of residence, Anguilla,[6] before a second incorporation in the Channel Islands. Hastings was the CEO;[7] other co-founders included Ryan Lackey and Sameer Parekh. Immediately following its public launch, HavenCo was the subject of a great deal of press coverage, including Hastings' appearance, along with several cofounders and the "royal family" of Sealand, on the cover of Wired's July 2000 issue,[8] before the company was entirely nationalised by the government of Sealand in 2002, after commercial failure and mounting tensions.[9]

In 2002, Hastings began work on seasteading with Patri Friedman, a project aimed at building floating communities free from the restrictions of current governments.[10] This collaboration continued through 2009, including a talk by Hastings at the Seasteading Institute's annual conference.[11]

Hastings is the cofounder, with Eric S. Raymond, of Green-Span, an open source infrastructure for trust and reputation management, begun in March 2009.

Hastings is also the author, with Paul Rosenberg, of a book, God Wants You Dead (Vera Verba, 2007; ISBN 978-0-9796011-1-8) which takes a look at the lighter side of atheism and anarchy, and was executive producer and an actor for The Last Generation to Die a short film about near future immortality technology.[12]


  1. ^ Markoff, John (June 4, 2000). "Rebel Outpost on the Fringes of Cyberspace". The New York Times. Retrieved May 2, 2009.
  2. ^ Fischermann, Thomas (April 12, 2003). "Die Piraten des 21. Jahrhunderts". Die Zeit. Retrieved May 2, 2009.
  3. ^ "Privat war gestern". Die Zeit. August 5, 2008. Retrieved May 2, 2009.
  4. ^ Garfinkel, Simson (July 2000). "Welcome to Sealand. Now Bugger Off". Wired. Retrieved May 2, 2009.
  5. ^ Platt, Charles (July 1997). "Plotting Away in Margaritaville". Wired. Retrieved May 2, 2009.
  6. ^ Ward, Mark (June 5, 2000). "Offshore and offline?". BBC News. Retrieved May 2, 2009.
  7. ^ "Stranger Than Paradise". On the Media. NPR. May 20, 2005. Retrieved May 2, 2009.
  8. ^ "The Ultimate Offshore Startup". Wired. July 2000. Retrieved May 2, 2009.
  9. ^ James Grimmelmann (March 27, 2012). "Death of a data haven: cypherpunks, WikiLeaks, and the world's smallest nation". Ars Technica. Retrieved April 16, 2012.
  10. ^ Ryan, John; George Dunford; Simon Sellars (2006). Micronations. Lonely Planet. p. 13. ISBN 978-1-74104-730-1.
  11. ^ Sean Hastings - Experiences with HavenCo and SeaLand Seasteading Institute, February 12, 2009
  12. ^ The Last Generation to Die at IMDb

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