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article imageThree key innovations with blockchain technology

By Tim Sandle     May 16, 2019 in Business
Blockchain technology has the potential to change the expanding information technology-based society into something new, more firmly based on trust. Three examples of innovative blockchain technology help to illustrate this trend.
Blockchain offers a number of advantages for businesses. The technology is secure, providing mathematical algorithms in combination with a peer-to-peer consensus network to create an immutable ledger of transactions that is nearly impossible to crack. The technology also introduces authenticity through the use of private keys, and it is transparent by offering independent verification of each transactions stored on the digital ledger.
For these reasons, blockchain is regarded as one of the most disruptive technologies within the digital transformation paradigm. To assess how blockchain is altering current and future practices, we take stock of three innovations.
Blockchain to make food safer
The food industry has been rocked by a number of issues, including several cases of bacterial contamination at a level sufficient to cause food poisoning. Blockchain provides a mechanism for the food industry to reduce such incidents and to restore a level of consumer confidence.
An example of this is being pioneered by Walmart, a company that is experimenting in a number of areas of retail technology. Walmart has designed a food-safety blockchain solution, with IBM, that allows the grocer to instantly track the origins of various products from pork to mangoes. The aim is that by September 2019, all suppliers of leafy greens will be required to have their data uploaded to the blockchain in order to continue to supply to Walmart stores.
Blockchain that is private
As an example of how blockchain technology is assisting consumers, the startup Keep Network has developed a new type of blockchain technology that aims to connect the division between public blockchains and truly private data. For this, the enterprise has developed ‘keeps,’ which are designed to house and protect private data in off-chain storage containers that connect to public blockchains.
The Keep Network is intending it’s off-chain storage container to severe as a near impenetrable store for blockchain data that users wish to keep private. This is different from most approaches to blockchain, where the aim is transparency. With the Keep concept the aim is privacy.
Keep’s process for building in privacy mechanisms uses Ethereum, although in time the network may be built on other blockchains.
Making banking more secure
Blockchain can make banking transactions more secure and reduce incidences of fraud. An example is with SecureKey Technologies Inc.’s Verified.Me. This is a digital identity system which has been adopted by five Canadian banks, accessible via a mobile app.
The Toronto-based startup is working with the Royal Bank of Canada, Toronto-Dominion Bank, Bank of Nova Scotia, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce and Desjardins Group. The long-term aim is to have key consumer services controlled and accessible through blockchain: to access health records, open accounts at banks and telephone companies, and obtain government services. A wider pilot between SecureKey Technologies and the Canadian government, to assess the feasibility of this wider application of blockchain, is expected to be completed towards the end of 2019.
More about blockchain, digital ledger, Supply chain
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