The Salvadoran government is promoting its Chivo wallet so that citizens can make transactions with Bitcoin. The terms and conditions of the wallet state that it is not responsible for the loss of funds.
After its implementation, Chivo has had bugs that affect user experience and compromise user privacy. As can happen with any new app, glitches and errors are affecting the operation of the wallet of the Salvadoran government.
Head of Research at Bitrefill, Matt Ahlborg (@MattAhlborg), created a compilation of the failures of the app. After some tests with the Chivo Wallet, he found some bugs that are not standard behaviors of Bitcoin wallets.
A critical error occurs when creating Lightning payment invoices as they show the full name of wallet owners. Ahlborg stressed that it was necessary to solve that privacy issue with Chivo.
He quoted a tweet that states that the Android version of the Chivo Wallet requests access to provide access to the microphone and contact list. The standard behavior of a Bitcoin wallet does not require that type of information or peripherals.
There Are Issues with the Use of the Chivo Wallet
It is possible to find bugs dealing with user experience since it is a very recent app. In that sense, Ahlborg highlighted the case of scanning invoices showing fixed amounts since the wallet also requests the total to send. For that reason, that software has been throwing error messages.
The research by Ahlborg indicates that a validity error occurs when scanning a Bitrefill invoice. It could be a specific compatibility issue between Chivo and Bitrefill, but he stated that he suspects that is happening with other wallets.
In addition, Ahlborg highlights an error that can affect the experience of using Chivo for the least skilled users. That wallet discounts the transaction cost from the total to send instead of from the remainder within it. For example, when sending 0.0001 BTC with a fee of 0.000005, the recipient will get 0.000095 BTC.
In the case of Bitrefill, when sending an exact amount, the user must add the network’s fee to the net amount. Ahlborg explained that Bitcoin wallets do not usually have those behaviors.
Chivo Takes No Responsibility for Loss of Funds Due to Failures
Although there have been issues with Chivo, its terms and conditions establish that the app and the Salvadoran government are not responsible. The latter does not compensate for damages, harms, or losses of funds due to glitches in the system, the Internet server, or the Chivo Wallet.
The terms and conditions of Chivo refer to its not being responsible for lost funds. However, the wallet could also not respond to the theft of personal information due to poor data security and protection. The current privacy issues that the app of the Salvadoran government has been facing add to that situation.
The president of El Salvador is aware of the relevance of Bitcoin in the world economy. For that reason, he proposed a bill to adopt it as legal tender in his country. However, he needs to solve some issues that have arisen after it entered into force.
By Alexander Salazar