Ethos - Universal WalletLatest release: 2.0.5 ( 22nd November 2019 ) 🔍 Last analysed 12th November 2021 . No source for current release found Not updated in a long time
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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 ¶
STATE-OF-THE-ART SECURITY - No more managing multiple private keys and wallets. With the Universal Wallet, you generate a single Ethos SmartKey for each wallet instance you create, and it takes care of the rest – providing automated maximum security management of all of your digital assets. You remain in complete control at all times. Lose your phone? Simply restore your cryptocurrency wallet and regain control of your funds using your Ethos SmartKey. Self-Custody at its finest!
so they claim self-custody but using some [brand name] SmartKey which definitely does not sound like a standard other wallets would support. What if they go out of business? Judging by the most recent ratings, that’s exactly what happened already but the comments also sound like the SmartKey is just BIP39 24 words mnemonic, so a broadly used standard after all.
We can’t find any source code and thus consider the app not verifiable.
Without public source of the reviewed release available, this product cannot be verified!
As part of our Methodology, we ask:Is the source code publicly available? If not, we tag it No Source!
A wallet that claims to not give the provider the means to steal the users’ funds might actually be lying. In the spirit of “Don’t trust - verify!” you don’t want to take the provider at his word, but trust that people hunting for fame and bug bounties could actually find flaws and back-doors in the wallet so the provider doesn’t dare to put these in.
Back-doors and flaws are frequently found in closed source products but some remain hidden for years. And even in open source security software there might be catastrophic flaws undiscovered for years.
An evil wallet provider would certainly prefer not to publish the code, as hiding it makes audits orders of magnitude harder.
For your security, you thus want the code to be available for review.
If the wallet provider doesn’t share up to date code, our analysis stops there as the wallet could steal your funds at any time, and there is no protection except the provider’s word.
“Up to date” strictly means that any instance of the product being updated without the source code being updated counts as closed source. This puts the burden on the provider to always first release the source code before releasing the product’s update. This paragraph is a clarification to our rules following a little poll.
We are not concerned about the license as long as it allows us to perform our analysis. For a security audit, it is not necessary that the provider allows others to use their code for a competing wallet. You should still prefer actual open source licenses as a competing wallet won’t use the code without giving it careful scrutiny.
But we also ask:Was the product updated during the last two years? If not, we tag it Obsolete!
Bitcoin wallets are complex products and Bitcoin is a new, advancing technolgy. Projects that don’t get updated in a long time are probably not well maintained. It is questionable if the provider even has staff at hands that is familiar with the product, should issues arise.
This verdict may not get applied if the provider is active and expresses good reasons for not updating the product.
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