Bitcoin Beach WalletLatest release: 1.7.7 ( 17th May 2022 ) 🔍 Last analysed 9th August 2021 . Custodial: The provider holds the keys
Do your own research!
Try out searching for "lost bitcoins", "stole my money" or "scammers" together with the wallet's name, even if you think the wallet is generally trustworthy. For all the bigger wallets you will find accusations. Make sure you understand why they were made and if you are comfortable with the provider's reaction.
The Analysis ¶
This wallet simply uses the tech that GaloyMoney has developed. This product is not officially affiliated with GaloyMoney or the Bitcoin Beach project based in El Salvador.
Lightning Wallet of the Bitcoin Beach community
This is the complete Google Play description. It’s very short and unclear, with no mention of the original developers. It doesn’t link to the official sites either although the app’s developer is still listed as “Galoy Inc.”
We already know that the Bitcoin Beach Wallet uses GaloyMoney’s tech AND claims to be the lightning wallet of the Bitcoin Beach community although it’s not officially affiliated with either of those. There’s no mention of the providers. No faces. No names. At the very least, they could have clearly stated that they are simply using GaloyMoney’s infrastructure. The app’s description seems to be implying that it is the official wallet which is bound to mislead people. There’s nothing there at all, so the providers will have no accountability if something goes wrong.
Bitcoin Beach Wallet maybe isn’t a scam, but it is intransparent and somewhat misleading. We hope this can be resolved, but either way as a custodial app it is not verifiable.
As the provider of this product holds the keys, verifiability of the product is not relevant to the security of the funds!
As part of our Methodology, we ask:Is the product self-custodial? If not, we tag it Custodial!
A custodial service is a service where the funds are held by a third party like the provider. The custodial service can at any point steal all the funds of all the users at their discretion. Our investigations stop there.
Some services might claim their setup is super secure, that they don’t actually have access to the funds, or that the access is shared between multiple parties. For our evaluation of it being a wallet, these details are irrelevant. They might be a trustworthy Bitcoin bank and they might be a better fit for certain users than being your own bank but our investigation still stops there as we are only interested in wallets.
Products that claim to be non-custodial but feature custodial accounts without very clearly marking those as custodial are also considered “custodial” as a whole to avoid misguiding users that follow our assessment.
This verdict means that the provider might or might not publish source code and maybe it is even possible to reproduce the build from the source code but as it is custodial, the provider already has control over the funds, so it is not a wallet where you would be in exclusive control of your funds.
We have to acknowledge that a huge majority of Bitcoiners are currently using custodial Bitcoin banks. If you do, please:
- Do your own research if the provider is trust-worthy!
- Check if you know at least enough about them so you can sue them when you have to!
- Check if the provider is under a jurisdiction that will allow them to release your funds when you need them?
- Check if the provider is taking security measures proportional to the amount of funds secured? If they have a million users and don’t use cold storage, that hot wallet is a million times more valuable for hackers to attack. A million times more effort will be taken by hackers to infiltrate their security systems.
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