When installing a new crypto wallet or updating to the latest version, there is no such thing as being too careful. Due to the fact you’re about to dump all of your crypto into such an application, you should be doing as many security checks as possible. However, some users trying to install version 3.3.3 of the Electrum Wallet on Windows are reporting numerous anti-virus software applications flagging it as a trojan application. Fortunately, the eight red flags are in fact due to a false positive – better to be over cautious than lose all your cryptos.
Anti-Virus Software Issues
According to an official response from developers at Electrum, the false positive is being given due to a package installer the wallet uses. Electrum is written in Python3 and uses PyInstaller to unpackage the wallet and install it onto your computer. This explains the red flags, as many malware and trojan viruses also use PyInstaller, which is causing the anti-virus heuristics to flag it as a trojan.
Version 3.3.3 is Completely Safe to Use
To cut a long story short, Electrum 3.3.3 is completely safe to use. It has been signed using the native Windows signing scheme by an entity with the name of “Electrum Technologies GmbH” and is also signed using GPG by @ecdsa – also known as ThomasV. The GPG key fingerprint is “6694D8DE7BE8EE5631BED9502BD5824B7F9470E6” and the SHA-256 ThomasV used to sign the official version was “d56c94c2846605721a4ab9b578c422cfc9c88c962fd75524c73a75e1bf3a58a9”. This is more than enough evidence to prove that version 3.3.3 of Electrum Wallet is totally safe to use, or Thomas Voegtlin – ThomasV – planted the bug himself. The former is likely to be the case, as he used his real name and official work credentials, so continue to use Electrum 3.3.3 and ignore the warnings.
Wallet Hacks are on the Rise
Unfortunately, crypto wallet hacks are on the rise and so too are the number of groups using this style of attack to steal crypto. Hackers spoof the official website of the digital wallet and place code into the wallet that redirects all crypto to their own wallets. 11 hackers have been arrested in Turkey for using this exact same process, so you can understand why the crypto community is skeptical about Electrum version 3.3.3.
Malicious Script Detected in BitPay and CoPay
Malicious code in a NodeJS package was detected in the BitPay and CoPay apps that gave hackers a backdoor into crypto wallets. From there, hackers could siphon off all of the funds in the wallet, leaving crypto holders completely baffled and crypto-less. Fortunately, the bug was caught in time and a patch was released before hackers could exploit the malicious code.
While it’s good to be over cautious when it comes to storing your cryptos, sometimes this over-caution can lead to a lack of trust in the crypto community. Electrum is working hard to fix this issue and to stop the false positive from flagging up, the damage to its reputation however could have already be done.