Tag Archives: blockchain

Mark Zuckerberg Considers Blockchain for Data Authorization and Logins

Mark Zuckerberg Considers Blockchain for Data Authorization and Logins

              

Mark Zuckerberg, CEO and founder of Facebook,

expressed interest in utilizing blockchain technology for the authorization of data, such as logins and account validation, in an interview with Harvard Law professor Jonathan Zittrain on Feb. 20th. In the interview, Zuckerberg iterated his January promise where he said he would look into blockchain and cryptocurrencies for its power to

decentralize the internet.

Zuckerberg told Zittrain that he “thinks we [Facebook] are a decentralizing force in the world,” adding that people of his generation got into technology because “It gives individuals power, and is not massively centralizing.”

With this mindset, Zuckerberg went on to explain the potential use cases of blockchain within Facebook’s framework, especially around decentralizing the control of data—a concern that has dogged Facebook since the Cambridge Analytica

scandal.

“Basically, you take your information, you store it on some decentralized system, and you have the choice to log into places without going through an intermediary,” .

The CEO also added that decentralized systems may give users more control over their data but could also lead to more abuse, and any recourse would be

far more difficult:

“In a fully distributed system, there’d be nobody who could cut off their access. A fully distributed system empowers individuals on the one hand, but it really raises the stakes,” said Zuckerberg. “It’s a lot easier to hold accountable large companies like Facebook or Google than a series of third-party apps. You’d also have more cases of abuse, and the recourse would be much harder.”

During the discussion, Zuckerberg was happy to look at both sides of the equation in terms of implementing blockchain technology on the social media platform. In that vein, he stated “I haven’t found a way for this to work” when explaining his stance about potentially using blockchain for login authentication—another use case the CEO is mulling over.

Facebook has taken another step towards experimenting with and implementing blockchain technology on its platform. Former VP of Messenger David Marcus was reassigned to launch a team to explore blockchain for Facebook in May of last year. On top of that, a number of blockchain developer roles opened up in December last year.

Facebook has shown its interest in blockchain ever since Zuckerberg made public his promise to further explore the technology, but this interview represents additional evidence that the social media giant is closer to utilizing blockchain for specific purposes within its enterprise. Such a move can’t be underemphasized as large companies begin leveraging and investing in the new technology.

Article Produced By

Darryn Pollock

Darryn is an award-winning journalist that began his career covering sports for a major national newspaper group in South Africa. Since then, he has married his interest in blockchain and cryptocurrency and looks to cover the emerging ecosystem as thoroughly as possible. He is particularly interested in the technical and economic impact of cryptocurrency. The author of this article is invested and/or has an interest in one or more assets discussed in this post.

https://cryptoslate.com/mark-zuckerberg-considers-blockchain-for-data-authorization-and-logins/

Deb Williams (hodlthrive)

SK Telecom Deutsche Telekom to Build Blockchain Identity Platform

SK Telecom, Deutsche Telekom to Build Blockchain Identity Platform

             

South Korea's largest wireless carrier, SK Telecom (SKT),

is partnering with the world’s fifth largest telecoms firm, Germany’s Deutsche Telekom, to develop a blockchain-based mobile identification solution. The news was reported in a press release from SKT on Feb. 21. A Memorandum of Understanding between the two firms is to be formalized during the Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2019, which kicks off on Feb. 25 in Barcelona, Spain.

The collaboration will see SKT and Deutsche Telekom’s R&D unit, T-Labs, develop a commercialized, blockchain-powered mobile identity solution that can be used for applications such as access control, dealings and contracts. SKT told local news outlet The Korea Times that it believes blockchain-based digital identification will significantly streamline and secure the process of verifying personal data. Oh Se-hyun, who heads SKT’s blockchain unit,

noted:

"Mobile blockchain identification can be utilized in a variety of areas including logins both online and in offices. Beginning with the latest collaboration, we will further spur the innovation of information and communications technologies."

SKT has outlined that many existing e-commerce and other web-based interactions require users to disclose personal data — such as their date of birth and phone number — whose circulation subsequently escapes their control.

In an encrypted blockchain system, such disclosure would be unnecessary, thereby offering more autonomous and secure management of sensitive information. SKT told reporters that blockchain-powered identification solutions could ultimately replaced government documents, including passports. Set to demonstrate their joint solution during MWC 2019, the Korean and German firms have said they expect travelers from both countries will face less friction confirming their identities by using the new system.

As reported, Deutsche Telekom has recently joined the Linux Foundation’s open source blockchain project Hyperledger, used by many enterprise-focused firms, such as IBM. SKT, for its part, has previously participated in the blockchain economy by backing Korean crypto exchange Upbit, as well as launching a blockchain-based asset management service and blockchain startup support platform in April 2018.

Article Produced By
Marie Huillet

Marie Huillet is an independent filmmaker, with a background in journalism and publishing. Nomadic by nature, she’s lived in five different countries this decade. She’s fascinated by Blockchain technologies’ potential to reshape all aspects of our lives.

https://cointelegraph.com/news/sk-telecom-deutsche-telekom-to-build-blockchain-identity-platform

Deb Williams (hodlthrive)

Ohio County Auditors to Explore Blockchain-Based Real Estate System

Ohio County Auditors to Explore Blockchain-Based Real Estate System

             

The County Auditors’ Association of Ohio (CAAO)

has announced the formation of a working group to study the use of blockchain for the effective transfer of property deeds. The news was reported on Feb. 21 by Ohio-based blockchain startup SafeChain — the technical advisor for the multi-county initiative.

The association’s collaborative effort will reportedly test the use of blockchain technology to bring efficiency gains to the execution and management of real estate transactions and the transfer of land titles across multiple counties. Their ongoing projects will be reportedly be reviewed by SafeChain member Tony Franco as they work to set goals and establish operating principle for the technology’s prospective use. CAAO, chaired by Warren County Auditor Matt Nolan, comprises thirteen Ohio county auditors, whose role as public officials includes oversight of the financial books and records of all county officers, as well as administering their respective counties’ budgets.

CAAO chair, Matt Nolan, was quoted in the press release as saying:

“We have a committed group […] to enhance technology and improve government operations to the benefit of the taxpayer. CAAO has set an extremely high standard for getting involved in technology projects due to the need to recognize its members’ diverse needs; this makes the formation of this working group particularly noteworthy.”

To press time, members of the CAAO have not responded to Cointelegraph’s request for comment on the development. As previously reported, the state of Ohio has made a bid to position itself at the fore of blockchain and cryptocurrency adoption, becoming the reported first state to accept Bitcoin (BTC) for tax payments in November 2018. In December, a total of seven Ohio funds pledged to invest over $300 million into blockchain startups through 2021.

Earlier in 2018, Ohio House of Representatives Speaker Ryan Smith convened a group of lawmakers, industry and academic figures to discuss positioning the state as a pro-innovation hub for blockchain. Alongside SafeChain, a gamut of startups are developing blockchain-powered real estate solutions, including the platform RealBlocks, which closed a $3.1 million seed funding round backed by digital assets manager Morgan Creek Digital this January.

Article Produced By
Marie Huillet

Marie Huillet is an independent filmmaker, with a background in journalism and publishing. Nomadic by nature, she’s lived in five different countries this decade. She’s fascinated by Blockchain technologies’ potential to reshape all aspects of our lives.

https://cointelegraph.com/news/ohio-county-auditors-to-explore-blockchain-based-real-estate-system

Deb Williams (hodlthrive)

Blockchain4Humanity Awards for Social Applications to be Unveiled at Labitconf Conference 2018

Blockchain4Humanity Awards for Social Applications to be Unveiled at Labitconf Conference 2018

               

Blockchain4Humanity, Blockchain4Goodrocks,

Bitcoin ONG Argentina, and RSK are teaming up to create a safe environment for projects to innovate and bring solutions that contribute to a positive change in the world. Social Impact projects restore trust in the Blockchain technology’s potential to significantly change the way we interact with each other and the world around us.

Blockchain4Humanity (B4H) strives for a world where the inequality gap is minimized, where business models bring positive change in people’s lives, and where an inclusive economy flourishes. Unfortunately, looking at the world as it is now, social impact projects are few and sporadic. Last year, the Blockchain4Humanity Awards were born at the renowned South-American Bitcoin Conference: Labitconf. Initially conceptualized by RSK and Bitcoin Argentina, it was decided to support the teams using Blockchain technology to shape a better world. b4H gives them the opportunity to accelerate their ideas and concepts, and bring us closer to this ideal world.

B4H seeks strong teams that can make good use of blockchain for social good, certain that the results could be groundbreaking. For example, the 2017 Blockchain4Humanity Awards unveiled the awesome work of EthicHub platform, which makes lending accessible to thousands of coffee producers while increasing returns to the lender. Modeling high social impact while offering an attractive return to the platform participants, EthicHub is an example of projects that b4H wishes to accelerate and support the mainstream adoption.

The whole b4H family is excited to receive applications and continuous to encourage great projects to come forward for the Blockchain4Humanity Awards, that will be presented by NGO Bitcoin Argentina and RSK in December 2018 at Labitconf Conference in Santiago de Chile.  After last year’s awards were released, the Blockchain4Humanity team, collaborators and partners made 2018 the year of defining and exploring all possibilities to create a decentralized accelerator that propels promising projects. Now with a strong network of partners, and the joining of Temco Labs as sponsors, the awards and the acceleration programs have enough fuel to start for this second edition.

Next wave of promising projects is coming as applications are now open via a simple online form at b4h.world until the 15th of November. Selected projects will be onboarded on the b4H Decentralized Altruistic Community (DAC) on the Giveth platform. The b4H DAC will ensure projects will be coached and mentored on all aspects that lead to the healthy delivery of a product.

Article Produced By
Bob Keith

Chronic crypto nut and freelance writer/editor for longer than I care to remember. Have finally found a home here at Crypto Disrupt.

https://cryptodisrupt.com/blockchain4humanity-awards-for-social-applications-to-be-unveiled-at-labitconf-conference-2018/

Deb Williams (hodlthrive)

IBM Launches Blockchain Platform on Cloud Service in Melbourne

IBM Launches Blockchain Platform on Cloud Service in Melbourne

                

IBM has released its blockchain main net

out of its data center located in Melbourne, Australia. This will purportedly allow their customers to run their applications on the company's cloud, according to an article published on news outlet ZDNet on Feb 11. The IBM platform was built on Hyperledger Fabric. Hyperledger is a project that aims to improve cross-industry blockchain technologies that is hosted by the Linux Foundation.

A Sydney-based IBM data center is reportedly set to open at the end of March, joining the other centers in Tokyo, London, Dallas, São Paulo, and Toronto. The head of blockchain for IBM in Australia and New Zealand, Rupert Colchester, told ZDNet that a second center would make the technology more widely available and provide a redundancy. Additionally, with the establishment of physical infrastructure, customer data will not have to cross borders, and would provide security for regulated applications in government and financial services. Colchester said, “Customers who are deploying blockchain applications have reached a maturity of projects that requires the data to be stored in Australia."

Colchester added that blockchain technology is widely applied and is “pretty much active” across all industries in Australia. He said, “I do very few education sessions nowadays, but there is a lot of discussion whereby clients are trying to understand how best they can apply it to the business problems they have." In September of last year, Australian real estate major Vicinity announced it will trial a blockchain solution for its energy network. Through a partnership with Australian energy tech company Power Ledger, the trial became a part of Vicinity’s $75 million solar energy program in Castle Plaza — a mall located in Adelaide, South Australia.

IBM has been actively expanding its use of blockchain technology. On Jan 31, IBM completed a blockchain-based trial in which it shipped 108,000 mandarin oranges from China to Singapore. The technology purportedly reduced paperwork handling and costs for the shipment, On Feb. 8, IBM announced that a project using blockchain and the Internet of Things (IoT) to combat drought in the United States state of California is underway. IBM Research and sensor tech provider SweetSense partnered with the University of Colorado Boulder and the non-profit Freshwater Trust to use blockchain and IoT to manage the use of groundwater.

Article Produced By
Miranda Karanfili

Miranda is a journalist based out of New York City. She is a dedicated writer, passionate about storyelling and making voices heard through her writing. She has joined Cointelegraph as a News Editor.

https://cointelegraph.com/news/bitcoin-hovers-near-3-630-as-top-cryptos-see-minor-losses

Deb Williams (hodlthrive)

China: New Guidance to Implement Blockchain in Agriculture Finance Sector

China: New Guidance to Implement Blockchain in Agriculture Finance Sector

              China: New Guidance to Implement Blockchain in Agriculture Finance Sector

The Chinese government has issued

the “Guiding Opinions on Rural Service Revitalization of Financial Services,” according to an official announcement on Feb. 11. The new framework is part of a plan to improve the efficiency of financial services for the country’s rural revitalization program.

The guidance will purportedly help promote the application of new technologies in the rural financial sector, such as blockchain, to “improve the identification, monitoring, early warning, and disposal levels of agricultural credit risks.” The Guiding Opinions were jointly issued by the People's Bank of China, the Banking Regulatory Commission, the China Securities Regulatory Commission, the Ministry of Finance, and the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs.

Applying blockchain in agriculture finance will purportedly streamline the collection and sharing of of agricultural data. Blockchain-based customer screening is expected to improve the credit evaluation model of agricultural businesses, increasing the number of loans issued while decreasing risk to creditors. The announcement also predicts that new technologies will encourage financial institutions to “develop exclusive loans products and small payment settlement functions for rural e-commerce and to open up a rural e-commerce capital chain.”

China’s foray to apply blockchain in various industries also extends to copyright protection services in their media outlets. In December 2018, the China Financial Media Copyright Protection Alliance — which consists of more than 30 financial media outlets — announced that it will use blockchain technology to develop copyright cooperation in the industry. Overall, China is a world leader in applying blockchain technology to various industries. In 2017, China filed more patents for blockchain applications with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) than any other country. Well over half of the 406 patents filed with the WIPO that year were from China, with 225. China was followed by the United States, at 91, and Australia, with 13.

Article Produced By
Miranda Karanfili

Miranda is a journalist based out of New York City. She is a dedicated writer, passionate about storyelling and making voices heard through her writing. She has joined Cointelegraph as a News Editor.

https://cointelegraph.com/news/china-new-guidance-to-implement-blockchain-in-agriculture-finance-sector

Deb Williams (hodlthrive)

Hyundai Commercial Partners With IBM to Accelerate Blockchain Development

Hyundai Commercial Partners With IBM to Accelerate Blockchain Development

            

Hyundai Commercial — a financial services subsidiary

of leading South Korean automobile manufacturer Hyundai — has announced a partnership with American tech giant IBM to modernize its business model using blockchain. The news was announced on Feb. 13 at IBM’s annual tech and business conference “IBM Think 2019” in San Francisco, California. Hyundai Commercial is reportedly “a corporate finance company that provides leasing and financial services for commercial vehicles and construction equipment.” The partnership with IBM will focus on using open source Hyperledger Fabric blockchain technology to create a new supply chain financing ecosystem for the Hyundai Commercial network.

Network participants — which include automobile dealers, distributors and manufacturers —  will have access to a real-time, shared view of all transactions on the blockchain, allowing for this data to be securely managed and efficiently distributed. The technology will also offer efficiency gains by automating hitherto manual processes. The announcement also reveals that a separate Hyundai financial services subsidiary, Hyundai Card, will be partnering with IBM to implement its machine learning technology to create an artificial intelligence-based chatbot for customer services.

As previously reported, IBM is fast developing its blockchain-based offerings — across financial services, supply chain, government, retail, digital rights management, healthcare and insurance. Recent projects include the use of blockchain and Internet of Things (IoT) to combat drought in the state of California, as well as a $700 million deal with one of Europe’s largest banks, Banco Santander, to accelerate the Spanish bank’s use of blockchain technology.

As reported, Chung Dae-sun — the nephew of the CEOs of Hyundai Group and Hyundai Motors — founded HDAC, a Korean blockchain-based IoT platform and issuer of the Hyundai-DAC token (DAC), alongside a fintech and blockchain subsidiary HyundaiPay. Earlier this week, HyundaiPay signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to promote the growth of fintech startups in Busan, South Korea’s second most populous city.

Article Produced By
Marie Huillet

Marie Huillet is an independent filmmaker, with a background in journalism and publishing. Nomadic by nature, she’s lived in five different countries this decade. She’s fascinated by Blockchain technologies’ potential to reshape all aspects of our lives.

https://cointelegraph.com/news/hyundai-commercial-partners-with-ibm-to-accelerate-blockchain-development

 

Deb Williams (hodlthrive)

Morgan Creek’s Venture Fund Raised 40 Million to Invest in Blockchain and Cryptocurrency

Morgan Creek’s Venture Fund Raised $40 Million to Invest in Blockchain and Cryptocurrency

             

Morgan Creek Digital Assets announced today

that it has successfully closed a $40 million venture fund that will invest in blockchain and cryptocurrency. Morgan Creek Digital Assets (MCDA) is an alternative asset management firm founded by Anthony Pompliano, Mark Yusko, and Jason Williams. The fund is an affiliate of multi-billion dollar asset manager Morgan Creek Capital Management.

According to a Tuesday press release, MCDA closed a $40 million fund targetting blockchain and cryptocurrency. The fund originally had a target of $25 million but was oversubscribed, raising a total of $40 million. Previously, MCDA has made equity investments in companies such as Coinbase, Bakkt, BlockFi, and RealBlocks. The firm is also likely to invest in cryptocurrency and other digital assets, as seen previously in its Digital Asset Index Fund. The index is comprised of Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, EOS, and Bitcoin Cash with smaller positions in five other coins.

Morgan Creek Digital’s recent raise was supported by two public pensions, a university endowment, a hospital system, and an insurance company, according to the press release from the company. Pompliano told CryptoSlate that “I believe this is the first public pension money in crypto,” suggesting that more conservative pensions are starting to take notice of blockchain and cryptocurrency as an investment vehicle.

Meanwhile, Mark Yusko, partner and co-founder of the fund said:

“We are proud to partner with these investment professionals who have shown an ability to be forward-thinking and innovative.”

Jason Williams, the other co-founder stated:

“The blockchain industry is seeing an incredible influx of highly-talented individuals and entrepreneurs. We believe many of the largest, most valuable companies of tomorrow will be built using this technology.”

In another statement from Pompliano on Twitter, he said “the institutions aren’t coming. They’re already here,” suggesting that institutions are already looking to get involved in the sector.

Article Produced By
Mitchell Moos

Editorial Manager at CryptoSlate

Mitchell is a software enthusiast and entrepreneur. In addition to writing, he runs a non-profit that teaches people about the blockchain. In his spare time he loves playing chess or hiking.

https://cryptoslate.com/morgan-creeks-venture-fund-raised-40-million-invest-blockchain-cryptocurrency/

Deb Williams (hodlthrive)

Canadian Securities Regulator Looking Into’ QuadrigaCX Cryptocurrency Exchange

Canadian Securities Regulator ‘Looking Into’ QuadrigaCX Cryptocurrency Exchange

              

The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) has initiated

a probe into Canada’s major cryptocurrency exchange QuadrigaCX, Reuters reported on Feb. 8. The Ontario Securities Commission reportedly told Reuters that “given the potential harm to Ontario investors, we are looking into this matter and have already been in contact with the monitor.” OSC spokeswoman Kristen Rose reportedly declined to specify whether this means the Commission was formally investigating the exchange.

The news comes in the wake of the British Columbia Securities Commission’s claim that it does not regulate QuadrigaCX since the company has reportedly not shown signs of trading of securities or derivatives, or operating as an exchange in general. The aforementioned harm purportedly refers to the exchange’s missing funds in the amount of CA$190 million dollars ($145 million) in digital assets discovered after the death of QuadrigaCX’s founder Gerald Cotten in December.

Quadriga has not been able to access its cold wallets where it kept most of the assets, because Cotten was purportedly solely responsible for the wallets and corresponding keys. Cold wallets are storage systems for digital assets which are not connected to the Internet, which prevents users from being hacked. The exchange purportedly only has CA$375,000 ($286,000) in cash, while it owes CA$260 million ($198,435,000) to its users.

The crypto community has been sceptical about the circumstances surrounding Cotten's death, especially after news broke that his will, naming his wife Jennifer Robertson as the sole beneficiary of his estate, was released 12 days before his death. Robertson reportedly stated in an affidavit that “I do not know the password or recovery key. Despite repeated and diligent searches, I have not been able to find them written down anywhere.” Last year, the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC) froze five accounts belonging to Quadriga’s payment processor, Costodian Inc., and its owner, Jose Reyes, totalling to $21.6 million. The bank purportedly froze the accounts due to an inability to identify the funds’ owners.

Article Produced By
Ana Alexandre

Total change in her career took Anastasia into the world of analytics and business information as a researcher and translator in 2010. Some time later she got into FinTech, a dynamically developing segment at the intersection of the financial services and technology. Ana joined Cointelegraph in September 2017.

https://cointelegraph.com/news/seoul-city-govt-appoints-members-to-blockchain-governance-team

 

Deb Williams (hodlthrive)

Medical RampD Alliance Expands Blockchain Project to Include Data Sharing

Medical R&D Alliance Expands Blockchain Project to Include Data Sharing

               

The Pistoia Alliance has expanded its blockchain project

to include data sharing, data identity, and data integrity, according to a press release published on Feb 8. The Pistoia Alliance is a not-for-profit organization established in 2007, with representatives from well-known pharmaceutical industry companies which include Pfizer, Novartiz, and GSK. The Pistoia Alliance was formed to help integrate new technology to assist in the companies’ respective research and development (R&D) fields.

The newest project will focus on the use of blockchain to validate sources in identifying data, to ensure data integrity, and to improve sharing between the organizations. Prior to its foray into blockchain-based data management, Pistoia concentrated on educating the medical industry on the emerging technology. According to Pistoia, a recent survey found that access to skilled personnel and understanding of the technology are the primary barriers to blockchain’s adoption. That same survey reportedly stated that one-fifth of respondents do not think blockchain adds value beyond a standard database.

“Much of the industry is still at the ‘discussion’ stage of blockchain, we want to move beyond this and take action that actively supports members and leads to tangible outcomes that will benefit R&D, accelerate innovation and support the discovery of new treatments,” according to the president of the Pistoia Alliance, Steve Arlington. Distributed ledger technology (DLT) has been implemented across the healthcare industry to make medical data more shareable and more secure. In November 2018, Myongji Hospital, located in the city of Goyang, South Korea, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Korean IT company BICube.

Per the terms of the MoU, the  two parties would use DLT to create a healthcare information exchange system and “build a hybrid cloud [platform] that combines a public cloud and a private cloud.” That same month, the Austrian government offered financial support for a U.K. cancer research company, Lancor Scientific, that uses blockchain technology to detect the disease. Lancor Scientific has purportedly developed a device to detect multiple cancer types and records the screening results with smart contracts on a blockchain.

Article Produced By
Miranda Karanfili

Miranda is a journalist based out of New York City. She is a dedicated writer, passionate about storyelling and making voices heard through her writing. She has joined Cointelegraph as a News Editor.

https://cointelegraph.com/news/canadian-securities-regulator-looking-into-quadrigacx-cryptocurrency-exchange

Deb Williams (hodlthrive)

The revolution from Deb Williams