Internet entrepreneur and eccentric John McAfee resorted to insults after learning about claims that the BitFi cryptocurrency wallet he presented alongside a Miami-based company of the same name in June was compromised despite being touted as "unhackable." A week after the launch of the device whose makers offered a $250,000 bounty to anyone who managed to hack it, on top of Mr. McAfee's own $100,000 offer, a Dutch enthusiast going by Twitter handle "OverSoftNL" claimed they were able to do so with the help of several security researchers, stating they gained root access to the gadget and calling its security underwhelming, describing what was purported to be the world's most secure cryptocurrency wallet as just another Android phone stripped of a cellular modem.
Mr. McAfee called the claim that the BitFi has been hacked due to the fact someone obtained root access to it as "utter nonsense," adding that the device can only be considered hacked if its coins are stolen. When one user presented the possibility of a hacker compromising the wallet and refunding it so as to wait for someone else to buy it and spy on them with root access, the 72-year-old asked them if they were "retarded." "We would not resell it for the very reason that it might have been tampered with," he wrote on Twitter. The author of the original root method accused BitFi of running a sham bug bounty program for promotional purposes, maintaining they never expected to be paid the bounty in the first place after the firm moved the goalposts by changing the terms of the thereof.
The issue of cryptocurrency security is presently one of the most talked-about topics in the field, with over $760 million in digital currencies being stolen so far in 2018 alone, according to some estimates. While there's no shortage of experts skeptical about the current viability of cryptocurrencies in everyday use, the present industry consensus is that such solutions and the blockchain technology as a whole are here to stay due to their ability to democratize and consequently revolutionize the manner in which data and digital assets are stored, managed, shared, and — most importantly — verified for authenticity.