Bitcoin wallet hack in El Salvador

Hackers further exposed information about El Salvador’s state-run Bitcoin wallet, Chivo, by leaking part of its source code on April 23. The hacker group CiberInteligenciaSV shared the code on a black hat hacking forum, stating their intent to make government-related information freely available.

Prior to this, the same group leaked personal data of 5.1 million Salvadorans who had downloaded the wallet, including names, ID numbers, birth dates, addresses, and photos. The recent leak also included code and VPN credentials related to Chivo’s ATM network.

Despite these breaches, the Salvadoran government has not issued an official response. Chivo was launched in September 2021 alongside Bitcoin’s adoption as legal tender, but its rollout faced challenges with software bugs and technical issues, including delays in promised incentives and difficulties in ATM transactions.

To improve Chivo’s functionality, the government announced plans to implement lightning network technology in over 100 ATMs by Q4 2024, aiming to facilitate faster and cheaper Bitcoin transactions. However, reports suggest that only a small fraction of the population has used the wallet for remittance payments, a key feature it was designed for.

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