Jaxx Liberty: Blockchain Wallet

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This app was first launched on 1st September 2018 and currently has more than 100000 downloads, a 4.5 stars rating from 2450 users and the latest APK (version 2.4.0) was from 30th March 2020.

Our analysis was done on 2nd November 2019 based on data found in their Playstore description and their website .

We found these ways of contacting the developers:

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Disclaimer

The following Analysis is not a full code review! We plan to make code reviews available in the future but even then it will never be a stamp of approval but rather a list of incidents and bad coding practice. We cannot find and tell you all the dark secrets the wallet providers might have.

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

Jaxx Liberty: Blockchain Wallet is non-custodial:

“Get started with an industry-standard 12-word backup phrase that is portable to and from other wallets. Sensitive information like your backup phrase and private keys are never stored anywhere but your device. Jaxx Liberty is a non-custodial wallet, which means you own the keys. You’re in control. We can’t even access them.”

The maker of Jaxx Classic & Jaxx Liberty is Decentral which was founded by Anthony Di Iorio, co-founder of Ethereum in 2013.

We couldn’t find source code for an Android wallet. Looking for the code we came across this article: “Jaxx Liberty Wallet Review: Complete Beginners Guide”. Some excerpts:

“the old Jaxx Classic wallet in June 2017 led to the loss of $400,000 in various cryptocurrencies from user wallets. Most of that loss was from a single user’s wallet, and in that case, it could have been avoided since the user was managing his Jaxx on a rooted Android device.”

“There is also an improved new security model that protects your sensitive information with a strong password, using AES-256 encryption enhanced by 5000 rounds of PBKDF2 password hashing.”

“Two things that are missing are 2-factor authentication and open source code. That said, they do make all the code viewable, with the exception of the code for the UI.”

That last one we were looking for. Without the full source code and full instructions on how to build the wallet, a verifiable build is not possible.

Verdict: This wallet is not verifiable.

Verdict Explained

Not verifiable: No Open Source Code found

This verdict means that we could not find any source to compile the app from. Internally the company might do everything right but as we can't verify it, there is nothing protecting the user from an exit-scam where the provider releases an app that leaks the keys to the servers.

The app 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 app 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.