Death of a data haven: cypherpunks, WikiLeaks, and the world’s smallest nation

“Sealand was an inspired choice for the data haven project. Roy Bates’s son, Michael, was running Sealand on a day-to-day basis as the Prince Regent by the 1990s. Michael inherited his father’s distaste for authority and his fondness for swashbuckling antics. A professional fisherman, he was hardly a computer geek. But he recognized in Hastings and Lackey the same cheeky outlaw spirit that had brought his own family to Sealand and kept it there for decades. Hastings and his wife flew out to visit Sealand, and a mutual love-in quickly followed.

Like any good dot-com-trepreneurs, Hastings and Lackey incorporated. They called the new venture HavenCo, for “Haven Co-location.” The pitch was simple. HavenCo would offer secure, anonymous hosting from Sealand. Microwave, fiber, and satellite links would provide fast and redundant bandwidth. Sealand’s concrete legs would be kitted out with server racks and uninterruptible power supplies—and then, for additional security, flooded with nitrogen, so that only authorized techies wearing scuba gear could would have physical access.”

Ars Technica

Sealand has one of the world’s strangest stories. And each time i read an article about it, it doesn’t get any duller.

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