El Salvador revamps bitcoin wallet after complaints of theft and fraud

The Central American country’s experimental adoption of bitcoin has been beset by problems including identity theft and missing funds. Now the system is being relaunched with a US company providing the infrastructure

Technology 3 February 2022

A vendor hods a sign reading "Bitcoin accepted" at a store in San Salvador, on January 26, 2022. - The International Monetary Fund (IMF) urged El Salvador to withdraw bitcoin as a legal tender, pointing to "great risks associated" with the use of cryptocurrency, a blow to President Nayib Bukele, his enthusiastic promoter. (Photo by MARVIN RECINOS / AFP) (Photo by MARVIN RECINOS/AFP via Getty Images)

A vendor holds a sign reading “Bitcoin accepted” at a store in San Salvador, on January 26, 2022

MARVIN RECINOS/AFP via Getty Images

El Salvador passed legislation to make bitcoin legal tender in September 2021, the first country in the world to do so, but the bold experiment has enjoyed limited success. Hundreds of citizens claimed that payments weren’t being received by shops, or that funds were disappearing from their accounts. Traders also briefly exploited a loophole in the state-issued wallet app to turn a quick profit. Now a US company is being drafted in …

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