An Australian entrepreneur has publicly identified himself as the inventor of the digital currency Bitcoin.

Dr Craig Wright made the announcement during an interview, apparently ending years of speculation about a person who, until now, has gone by the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto.

Mr Wright said he wants to allay fears about the digital currency and help people understand its potential.

I firmly believe that Bitcoin and the Blockchain can change the world for the better. I didn't take the decision lightly to make my identity public and I want to be clear that I'm doing this because I care so passionately about my work and also to dispel any negative myths and fears about bitcoin and the Blockchain.

Craig Wright

Mr Wright reportedly provided technical proof to verify his admission, using coins known to be owned by Bitcoin's creator.

However, the revelation has received a mixed response on social media with many skeptical of Dr Wight's claims.

Bitcoin is an entirely virtual currency that works without the need for a central bank, and can be sent over the internet.

Coins are transferred directly from person to person, and are kept in a digital wallet that can be accessed on a computer or mobile device.