Google Clarifies KryptoKit Issue, Bitcoin Jumps and Everyone’s Happy

A member of the Google Chrome team has offered some clarification to yesterday’s removal and subsequent reinstatement of the KryptoKit app,

A member of the Google Chrome team has offered some clarification to yesterday’s removal and subsequent reinstatement of the KryptoKit app, via reddit.

It turns out that Google’s removal of the app was not only of benefit for Google and its users, but for the KryptoKite app as well.

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A malware developer hoping to steal private keys developed his own malicious extension based off the KryptoKit codebase. Google detected the malware but inadvertently bundled in the genuine KryptoKit because it shares the majority of the effective code and assets. Once the error came to light, KryptoKit was reinstated. He ends off:

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“Obviously this is a learning experience for us and we are continuing to perfect our protections in the webstore. But we wanted to emphasize that we are definitely not seeking to limit Bitcoin extensions in general or the kryptokit extension in particular – but rather trying our best to keep users safe from malicious exploits.”

Everyone seems to be much happier now with Google. The mood in the cryptosphere is actually quite jolly, with the community appreciating Google’s gesture while enjoying a resurgence in bitcoin’s price. Those spreading conspiracy theories about Google trying to suppress Bitcoin will be viewed as in the same camp as “trolls” calling the crash in price a few days ago. Indeed, the Google Chrome rep said that “many of us are enthusiasts, too!”, evidenced by their learning of the issue from visiting the Bitcoin subreddit.

Still, some users expressed discontent at the lack of information provided during the period of removal. Users were unable to use their wallets and had to use workarounds to obtain their keys.

The incident is a reminder of the risks of (a) attempting to make tools as “decentralized as possible” in eliminating usernames, passwords etc. and (b) relying on 3rd parties for storing sums of bitcoins without a robust action plan if something goes wrong.

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