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BRD Bitcoin Wallet. Buy Crypto

latest release: 4.13 ( 27th September 2021 ) last analysed  29th June 2021 Not reproducible from source provided 
4.6 ★★★★★
22nd June 2014

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Please help us spread the word, asking BRD Bitcoin Wallet. Buy Crypto to support reproducible builds  via their Twitter!

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.

If you find something we should include, you can create an issue or edit this analysis yourself and create a merge request for your changes.

The Analysis 

Update 2021-06-29: The provider informed us that the latest code can be found in a new repository. Apparently the new repository is a fork of the old android repository where they changed the license from open source to some look-dont-touch license. For us, both provide the same degree of transparency so we have to revert the last change in verdict. This app does indeed share up to date source code although the git tag and the App Store version name do differ.

Update 2021-06-27: As pointed out here, the provider stopped updating the public source repository and thus is to be considered closed source. The current version on the App Store is 4.11 from yesterday. The latest version available on their GitHub is from 2021-03-16.

This provider claims

Trusted by nearly 5 million users in over 170 countries. Nearly $7B USD in cryptocurrency under protection.

which is worrying for your privacy cause “how would they know?”.

Total Bitcoin Cryptocurrency Wallet Privacy
No signup is required and BRD connects directly to blockchain networks, not BRD’s servers. You are in total control of your privacy and bitcoin crypto wallet.

This is a claim which directly implies this app to be non-custodial and they say it explicitly here:

Unhackable Cryptocurrency Security
Store all your valuable cryptocurrency in a virtually unhackable environment, all for free! Your bitcoin crypto wallet is protected on your own device utilizing industry-leading hardware encryption and Apple’s mobile security.

Terms like “Unhackable” and “total security” raise our suspicion though. Nothing is totally secure. Nothing is absolutely unhackable.

But back to the protocol … So the provider claims the app is non-custodial. Can we test that? Where is the source code? No link on App Store …

On their website we find a link to their GitHub and there a repository with a promising name.

So is it reproducible? As all iPhone app, we don’t see how to reproduce this one and neither does the provider claim its reproducibility and we give it the verdict not verifiable.


Verdict Explained

We could not verify that the provided code matches the binary!

As part of our Methodology, we ask:

Is the published binary matching the published source code? If not, we tag it Unreproducible! 

Published code doesn’t help much if it is not what the published binary was built from. That is why we try to reproduce the binary. We

  1. obtain the binary from the provider
  2. compile the published source code using the published build instructions into a binary
  3. compare the two binaries
  4. we might spend some time working around issues that are easy to work around

If this fails, we might search if other revisions match or if we can deduct the source of the mismatch but generally consider it on the provider to provide the correct source code and build instructions to reproduce the build, so we usually open a ticket in their code repository.

In any case, the result is a discrepancy between the binary we can create and the binary we can find for download and any discrepancy might leak your backup to the server on purpose or by accident.

As we cannot verify that the source provided is the source the binary was compiled from, this category is only slightly better than closed source but for now we have hope projects come around and fix verifiability issues.

The product cannot be independently verified. If the provider puts your funds at risk on purpose or by accident, you will probably not know about the issue before people start losing money. If the provider is more criminally inclined he might have collected all the backups of all the wallets, ready to be emptied at the press of a button. The product might have a formidable track record but out of distress or change in management turns out to be evil from some point on, with nobody outside ever knowing before it is too late.