Mobile crypto mining app potentially associated with loss of personal data

Pi Network, a cryptocurrency mining app for mobile users, may have been linked to 17GB worth of personal data leaks, a Vietnamese news agency reported on Monday.

The treasure trove of personal data was apparently extracted from the Know Your Customer reviews of Pi Network users, according to the person who posted it on Thursday in the hacker hangout RaidForums.

The ID cards of an estimated 10,000 Vietnamese citizens were put up for sale along with associated home addresses, telephone numbers and email addresses. The seller put a price of $ 9,000 on the data, payable in either Bitcoin (BTC) or Litecoin (LTC).

Phien Vo, host of a Vietnamese group chat channel operated by Pi Network, told VnExpress that Pi Network’s KYC checks are carried out by a third party, adding that Vietnamese IDs like the one in question are not compatible with the app. However, Vo stated that an older version of the app was compatible with the cards at one point in time.

“To do a KYC check on the Pi Network, Vietnamese would have to use their passports. Only a few users who have used previous versions of Pi have been able to take the KYC verification with their driver’s licenses. However, the system has not yet accepted Vietnamese IDs, ”said Vo.

The cybersecurity division of the Vietnamese Ministry of Public Security has since opened an investigation into the matter.

An independent research into the perceived value of Pi Network was recently conducted by Cem Dilmegani, a technology entrepreneur and founder of AIMultiple. The review came weeks prior to the most recent data leak and found that Pi Network has the characteristics of a tiered marketing program or an affiliate marketing program.

The Pi app reportedly prompts users to log in every day and click a button to get their PI coins. The app doesn’t use a blockchain consensus algorithm like proof-of-work or proof-of-stake, and users can get higher mining rates by recommending others. The PI token is not yet traded on exchanges and has no dollar value.

According to reports, the app sells data for advertising revenue from the moment it is used. Given that ad space with personal user information can be sold for a higher value, many have speculated that the Pi app is only used to remove personal information from its users. Cointelegraph reached out to a Pi Network spokesperson for comment. This article will be updated if you reply.