El Salvador’s Bitcoin wallet hacked by CiberInteligenciaSV

abdelaziz Fathi

El Salvador’s official Bitcoin wallet, Chivo, has faced another security setback as the hacker group CiberInteligenciaSV released parts of the wallet’s source code on the black hat hacking forum BreachForums.

The incident occurred on April 23, marking the latest in a series of breaches targeting the national cryptocurrency project.

This latest incident involved CiberInteligenciaSV posting snippets of the code used in Bitcoin Chivo Wallet ATMs throughout El Salvador. In their online message, the group stated, “This time I am bringing you the code that is inside the Bitcoin Chivo Wallet ATMs in El Salvador, remember that it is a government wallet, and as you know, we do not sell, we publish everything for free for you.”

The breach follows a separate incident a few days earlier when the same group released the personal data of 5.1 million Salvadorans, nearly the entire adult population. The hackers claimed that this action was to punish the Salvadoran government for its refusal to engage with them.

The local cybersecurity project VenariX alerted the public to the leak via the social media platform X on April 22, citing a post from CiberInteligenciaSV’s Telegram channel which preceded the release of the source code and VPN access.

“Tonight we will publish part of the source code and VPN access that belongs to Chivo Wallet, for free as always, unless one of you nosy government people wants to talk,” CiberInteligenciaSV’s Telegram post reads.

El Salvador made history in September 2021 by becoming the first country to adopt Bitcoin as legal tender. The controversial move aimed at reducing the economic impact of the devaluation of the local currency. At the time, the Chivo Wallet was introduced to facilitate the use of bitcoin, allowing citizens to buy, sell, and store the cryptocurrency securely. However, the launch was marred by multiple technical issues and bugs, according to user reports.

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