Ledger CEO Evades Answer About Potential Subpoena Response

During an AMA on Twitter spaces the other day, Ledger CEO Pascal Gauthier was pressed on whether or not they would respond to subpoena regarding customer KYC information.

He brought up the story of when Apple refused to unlock the iPhone of the San Bernardino shooter. When asked if Ledger would do they same, he claimed that he was being asked “impossible questions” and essentially evaded the question altogether.

“We will always be on the side of our customers, but also you are asking me an impossible question to answer. Which in ever scenario, all the time, everywhere, I don’t know”

This obviously raises some serious concerns. Regardless of whether or not assets can be seized, Ledger will now have KYC access to customers who opt into the Recover service. And while it is easy to say, “Simply do not opt in”, the fact that this is even now an issue is concerning to say the least.

You can listen to the entire Twitter Spaces AMA here.


And this specific part starts at 1:11:48

They also committed to accelerating their open source roadmap.

“So, we have made the decision to accelerate the open sourcing roadmap! We will include as much of the Ledger operating system as possible, starting with core components of the OS, and Ledger Recover, which won't be released until this work is complete. Furthermore, we will open source the Ledger Recover protocol, enabling the community to have as much choice as possible over your self-custody, in addition to the service being fully optional. This roadmap will be shared and updated by our CTO and engineering team.”

What do you think? Can Ledger simply not be trusted now? Or with the right steps and solutions, such as open sourcing their software, they will be able to gain back this lost trust?

49 thoughts on “Ledger CEO Evades Answer About Potential Subpoena Response”

  1. Them evading the question is a clear sign that they will side with the authorities when push comes to shove.

  2. Him refusing to answer is already an answer, we all know the answer, he just didn’t want to say it out loud imo

  3. So.. it means yes. We should have a reminder post once a month about the risk of using ledger so that people new to crypto can make informed decisions.

  4. Legally, you would think they’d have to unless they fought the subpoena in court

  5. >We will include as much of the Ledger operating system as possible

    Making such careful statements already makes me question how serious they are about it. Publish everything or watch your company go under.

  6. lol are we seriously questioning wether the French would surrender to a government pressuring them? 😂💀

  7. Ledger’s CEO just did this to their customer’s trust.

    “If you can’t convince them then confuse them”

  8. This whole debacle has been so fascinating to watch unfold. Spectacularly bad handling. The FTX mini series was wild but this one’s turning out to be pretty crazy too

  9. The whole subpoena thing is a dealbreaker for me. I know DEX’s would do exactly the same, but DEX’s are not the same as self-custody (duh!). That’s also why DEX’s function as on/off-ramp and hot-wallet. As soon as the investment (and potential for loss) is unbearable, the funds get moved to a cold wallet.

  10. At the end the company has to comply, or pay high fees in case they are not following government rulings… Or maybe just establish a new headquarters in a different jurisdiction… Oh almost forgot that the US may be reaching out to any company as soon as they provide services to their citizen’s.. that’s what we see with exchanges..
    Kind of tricky situation.. I guess it’s naive to think such questions are easy to answer..

  11. 🙄 if you operate a business in a country you’ll be subject to the laws of that country which includes subpoenas. To use their service (you don’t have to) the shards are split between three companies in three different countries. That means they need at least two subpoenas for two foreign companies. The hilariousness of you my memecoin owners is you think governments would give a shit about you. They don’t. Are you selling arms? Massive amount of drugs? Well, you should be using Monero ya dolts and certainly not KYCing your 24 words. Or… ya know… don’t use the feature. Or buy a different wallet. This childish faux outrage is hilarious.

  12. I knew ledger was fishy all along and yet I have 2 because I was unsure how to build my own hardware wallet

  13. >They also committed to accelerating their open source roadmap.

    They cannot open source their secure enclave, so this will hilariously blow up in their faces. Grab the popcorn..

    Their open source roadmap is just them explaining how it works, with the distant endgame of creating modular (opensource) software that works with Ledger (like Ledger Live/Recover).

    The secure chip which may be broadcasting your and everyone’s private key cannot be open sourced. Ledger has signed NDAs to never expose that code, it is required to use those chips and the industry standard. As long as that black box is inside there, a Ledger cannot ever be opensource. We will never have any idea if the opensource commands unlock something nefarious within the black box firmware or not. At the end of their roadmap will still be a giant, trust me bro.

    But, of course, classic Ledger they called it open source anyway because that’s what people are demanding from them. Another communication fuckup on mastery levels, it’s almost worth applauding. Now just wait for Twitter to figure this out.

    I would like to say they can be as trusted as they always were, nothing technically changed. With how badly they’re rolling this out, the CEO is clearly a doofus, and if we have to trust him I am not so sure anymore.

  14. Ledger isn’t Apple. They’re not big enough to resist government pressure. Are we supposed to think a limp CEO like this is going to stand up to heavy pressure from the US government. The department of justice? The FBI?… Not a chance.

    They will handover keys, customer information, and gladly unlock any seized Ledger device by brute forcing a firmware update.

  15. I am done with ledger anyway, but was surprised to see that many people in ledger subreddit still support ledger and stay with them.

  16. It’s not an impossible question at all. If apple can refuse to unlock an iPhone, they can refuse to give access to a wallet’s private keys.

    This whole incident will go down in infamy. They’ve gone from hero to zero in the space of a few weeks.

  17. My moves so far.

    1. Stax prerorder cancelled
    2. Keystone Pro ordered
    3. I will not update FW on Ledger X
    4. When Keystone Pro arrives, I’ll generate new seed and move everything there
    5. Throwing Ledger to rubbish
  18. He already said it himself right? There’s nothing to confirm, he already confirmed it before.

  19. Last I checked, they hadn’t committed to open sourcing the firmware, which is the only thing that matters.

    I defended ledger a bit on the first day, to combat the usual inflated rumors here. Sad to say that the issue is worse than I hoped originally.

  20. They did it because they were forced to. They probably already have anyone’s keys who’s updated the firmware and connected their wallet. I don’t believe anything they say until they let us verify via open source code. What ever happened to Trust but verify?

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