Hardware wallets & ElectrumSV

Introduction

The ElectrumSV testing hardware wallets.
  • Digital Bitbox.
  • Keepkey.
  • Ledger.
  • Trezor.

Why use a hardware wallet?

Do you understand how well it protects you?

Do you know what you can use it for?

Digital Bitbox (AKA BitBox01)

A Digital Bitbox hardware wallet.

The future of “Digital Bitbox” support in ElectrumSV

Limitations

  • Can only sign at most 14 inputs. What this might mean is that if the coins in your wallet are low value, you will have to manually combine them if more than 14 of them are needed to make up the desired amount you wish to pay.
  • Only supports P2PKH payments. Does not support other forms of payment, like multi-signature payments.
  • Forces firmware updates on the user. As the Digital Bitbox has been end of lifed by it’s makers, it is unlikely there are updates that are incompatible with ElectrumSV. It is more likely that an out of date device cannot be used because the makers no longer support firmware updates. We can actually disable the firmware check in ElectrumSV and should do so.

Keepkey

Compatibility

User guide

Imagine that logo slides left and right like a screensaver.
Keepkey virtual keyboard to aid in secure pin entry.
ElectrumSV virtual keyboard for Keepkey.
Keepkey confirmation of values and destinations.
Keepkey confirmation of the total transaction value.

Limitations

  • Can only have one change output. This means that if ElectrumSV uses more than one change address, the Keepkey will say “What is this strange address you are paying to, do you recognise it?” And the user will probably complain their wallet is broken as they won’t have any idea where it comes from.

Ledger

Device — Ledger Nano S

Device — Ledger Blue

The Ledger Blue dashboard.
The Ledger Blue Bitcoin Cash app.
The Ledger Blue Bitcoin Cash transaction confirmation screen.

Warning

  • Ledger Nano S. This was used maybe two or three times, was never dropped or anything like that. One of the buttons just did not work when it was taken out of storage for testing, and apparently this is not an unknown problem. I contacted them about returning the device for a replacement, but it was more hassle than it was worth.
  • Ledger Blue. When this device displays the payment address from the transaction it is signing, for confirmation, it on many occasions has shown screen distortions directly over the address and nowhere else! If the address cannot be seen, then it becomes only a mild improvement over the somewhat pointless Digital Bitbox USB key.

Limitations

  • Does not support Bitcoin SV. It has to be used in Bitcoin Cash mode to work with ElectrumSV.
  • The existing ElectrumSV code for these wallets claim it can only have one payment output. This means that if the user tries to pay to multiple addresses with one transaction, how the Ledger will behave is undefined.
  • The existing ElectrumSV code for these wallets claim it can only have one change output per transaction. This means that if ElectrumSV uses more than one change address, the Ledger will say “What is this strange address you are paying to, do you recognise it?” And the user will probably complain their wallet is broken as they won’t have any idea where it comes from.

Trezor

Device — Trezor Model T

Unlock your Trezor Model T first.
Enter your pin on the Trezor Model T touch screen.
Confirm the value and destination of your Trezor Model T transaction.
Confirm the locktime of the Trezor Model T transaction.
Final summary confirmation screen for Trezor Model T.

Device — Trezor Model One

ElectrumSV virtual keyboard for Trezor.
Trezor virtual keyboard to aid in secure pin entry.
Hard to photograph Ledger One confirmation of amount paid to an address.
Hard to photograph Ledger One confirmation of transaction amount summary.

Types of protection

Protection up to point of next payment

Protection with visual verification

Protection with proper support for Bitcoin SV

  • Ability to sign new types of transaction outputs: Bare multi-signature. Basic accumulator multi-signature. Dynamic variations of accumulator multi-signature. OP_RETURN data. R-Puzzles. WP42 shared secret derivations. Anything that opens up the world of possibilities available to use on Bitcoin SV.
  • Ability to encrypt and decrypt messages: Existing hardware wallets do not support this. It would likely be necessary to support ECIES (which ElectrumSV and Money Button’s bsv.js library use) and the Tokenized encryption standards.
  • Moving beyond addresses: Paying to addresses and visually comparing addresses is something that might always be needed, in case the need arises, but I think we can do better. What if we can get identity data on the replacement solution and can verify that any payment involving a known identity is being made to that known identity. Then instead of seeing “0.5 BSV is being paid to <SOME UNREADABLE “ADDRESS”>” you might see that “0.5 BSV is being paid to ned@ryerson.com”. Further still the replacement solution might be able to unpack any private payment context encrypted into the payment and display/verify that as well.

Final thoughts

Thanks to..

  • Bernhard Müller for the detailed information on the Trezor Model T, and firmware compatibility.

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ElectrumSV developer

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ElectrumSV developer

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