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World Economic Forum Blockchain led by Estonia

The World Economic Forum Blockchain created a new working group focused on the distributed ledger with the Estonian President.

This so-called “Global Futures Council on Blockchain Technology” will be met for the first time during an event held in Dubai  later this week. According to the World Economic Forum Blockchain the group will be focused on the development of governance models related to the distributed ledger.

Toomas Hendrik Ilves, president of Estonia for 10 years, will co-chair together with Jamie Smith, chief communications and marketing officer for bitcoin mining and blockchain services firm BitFury and a former official in the Obama White House.

Members of the group are: Ma Jun (chief economist for the People’s Bank of China’s research outfit) and Claire Sunderland Hay (head of the Bank of England’s fintech startup accelerator).

The group also include representatives from bitcoin-related startups such as BitPesa, Everledger, Ripple and Chain; and institutions such as Barclay’s and Deutsche Bank.

Here you can read the full list of the “World Economic Forum Blockchain” members.

“The distributed ledger or blockchain system of preserving data integrity and security is one of the most promising new technologies to emerge in the past decade. Its full potential is only now beginning to be realized. This Council will play a leading role exploring how blockchain can be used to improve security on the internet.”

The WEF counducted an internal research about the blockchain since 2015 and this new working group is part of a broader network of Global Agenda Councils, focused on problems such as climate change, AI and cybersecurity.

<img src="/images/worldeconomicforumblockchain.jpg" alt="World Economic Forum Blockchain " height="264" width="350" />

Open your free digital wallet here to store your cryptocurrencies in a safe place.

Amelia Tomasicchio

Estonia bank to study benefits of integrating Bitcoin technology

etukuva[1]

(CoinDesk) Estonia-based bank LHV has announced a new project that will explore
the legal framework and potential uses of bitcoin’s block chain
technology in banking so it might develop bank services for bitcoin and
other digital currencies.
“We are interested in the technological
side of digital currencies as we hope it could make bank services more
simple and efficient,” Priit Rum, head of communications at LHV, told
CoinDesk.
The project manager will examine all digital currencies, not limiting itself to bitcoin.
For
now, the bank won’t engage in trading bitcoin, Rum said, but more
likely, could develop its payments system using block chain technology.
The company claims to be the first bank in the world to implement such a program, stating:

“We
have been aware of crypto currencies for some time now […] we decided
last month that establishing a side project to explore the block chain
technology and analyse possibilities of cryptocurrencies would be a good
opportunity to stay with the innovation.”

Regulatory uncertainty remains

While the news of this action by a major bank is perhaps encouraging, in Estonia, bitcoin is tangled in regulatory uncertainty.
Earlier this year, the country’s central bank issued a warning
against bitcoin and digital currencies calling it a Ponzi scheme,
saying “virtual currency schemes are an innovation that [deserve] some
caution”, but that it would continue to monitor their development.
Shortly after, local bitcoin trading site BTC.ee put a halt on trades, coming under pressure from Estonian authorities who challenged the site’s compliance with the Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing Prevention Act.
Said Rum:

“LHV
is a regulated bank and we take all the regulations and guidelines very
seriously […] For us, all the questions about ‘know your customer’ and
concerns of money laundering have to be dealt with before we can really
develop new bank services using new technology.”

Local enthusiasm grows

Estonians have been enthusiastic about bitcoin for some time, despite the regulatory difficulties the domestic ecosystem faces.
The
country’s capital Talinn had a successful week-long bitcoin showcase
last month, during which bitcoin advocates came together to educate
those new to the digital currency and boost its popularity.
For more on the latest developments in the eastern European economy, read our most recent report.

Open your free digital wallet here to store your cryptocurrencies in a safe place.

Satoshi

Nasdaq Blockchain: new investments in more startups

Nasdaq Blockchain – related venture initiatives include new investment in distributed ledger based startups.

Today Nasdaq Ventures announced it has decided to invest in startups and companies that work with blockchains and/or artificial intelligence, next-generation data analysis and machine learning.

Nasdaq Blockchain budget is $10m to be awarded to deserving startups that are focused on both seed-stage and late-stage placements.

This Nasdaq Blockchain effort is a natural extension of the firm’s work in the blockchain field.

Back in 2015, Nasdaq started a partnership with Chain, an enterprise-grade blockchain infrastructure that enables organizations to build better financial services from the ground up.

This effort saw the two companies develop a distributed ledger market focused on pre-IPO offerings.

President and CEO of Nasdaq, Adena Friedman, explained in a statement:

“With the launch of our new venture investment program, we are reinforcing our focus on driving growth and innovation by evaluating, distributing, licensing and integrating disruptive technologies for the long-term benefit of our global clients.”

Nasdaq has been testing the blockchain even in other areas.

In fact, back in February 2016, Nasdaq announced its blockchain tests on e-voting prototypes with Estonia’s sole securities exchange.

Also, in January, Nasdaq published a report arguing that the distributed ledger is also useful beyond transaction settlement.

Read more about Nasdaq Blockchain – related projects by clicking here.

Open your free digital wallet here to store your cryptocurrencies in a safe place.

Amelia Tomasicchio

Why governments should embrace the Blockchain

governments_should_embrace_the_blockchain
 
William Mougayar, author of “The Business Blockchain” and member of the Ethereum Foundation, explains why governments should embrace the blockchain.
A few days ago we published an article where ICAP suggested on why banks must adopt digital currencies; today we want to talk about this new important opinion by Mougayar, who is convinced that the distributed ledger could improve government services.
Government services, in fact, are one of the most important and revolutionary use cases for this technology , so it is not a surprise that governments are working to develop their own blockchain-based applications.
During this year several cities and governmental institutions made their own plans for the ledger.
Singapore, Delaware, Estonia, Georgia, Ghana, Sweden, Switzerland, UK are just a few of many countries that developed a project related to the blockchain.
So, if your government is not working on the blockchain, they should, explained Mougayar.
As the blockchain is an early stage technology, it is easier to implement solutions at smaller scales.

How governments should embrace the Blockchain

What can your government do with the blockchain? There are four main areas:
  1. Verification: licenses, proofs of records, transactions, processes or events.
  2. Movement of assets. E.g. Transferring money from one person/entity to another.
  3. Ownerships: the blockchain is a perfect ledger to custody any asset.
  4. Blockchain can be used to give e-identities to its citizens, enabling a safer kind of voting.
So, government leaders should:
  1. Study the blockchain and explore its potential.
  2. Let people develop a blockchain strategy.
  3. Start experimenting with blockchain technology
  4. Develop new ideas to improve the quality of life of the citizens

Open your free digital wallet here to store your cryptocurrencies in a safe place.

Satoshi

How to buy Bitcoin through PayPal

paypal-bitcoin-ecoin-visa-wirex
The producer of bitcoin debit card, E-Coin (previously known as Wirex) now allows people to buy bitcoin through Paypal


Improving the Bitcoin Use

Here the full list of countries where it is possibile to use E-Coin to buy Bitcoin via PayPal.
Bahamas, Bahrain, Botswana, Bulgaria, Chile, Croatia, Estonia, Georgia, Gibraltar, Honduras, Iceland, Indonesia, Israel, Italy, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Lesotho, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Malta, Mauritius, Moldova, Morocco, Mozambique, Oman, Philippines, Romania, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Turkey, United Arab Emirates and Uruguay.

How E-Coin works

E-coin is very simple to use. You just have to follow some simple steps.
To buy Bitcoin via PayPal through E-Coin platform, you need a PayPal account with a positive balance and a virtual E-coin Visa debit card with $3 at least.

E-Coin Fees

E-coin will not charge any fee for this service, but PayPal requires $5 for each transaction, while the minimum withdrawal is $10.

Step-by-Step Guide to Buy Bitcoin

  • Log in into your PayPal account
  • Go to “Money” and then click on the “Add A Card” button
  • Click on “Add another card”
  • Fill the form with Name, Card Type and Billing address
  • Click on “Save” 
  • Then, you need to provide a PayPal code. Return to your PayPal account and insert the 4-digit code. This way you will link the E-Coin card to your PayPal account.
  • Go to your E-Coin account and under “card transactions,” there is a 4-digit code from PayPal 
  • Return to your PayPal account 
  • Go to “Withdraw Money.” 
  • Select “Withdraw Funds To Your Card”
  • Enter the amount to withdraw, click on E-Coin Visa card, and then on “Continue.” 
Now the withdrawal is been requested. The funds will be available into your E-Coin card within seven days.
When funds are avaialble on your E-Coin card, you can buy bitcoin, so log into your E-Coin account and select “Buy Bitcoin”. 
The minimum amount is 0.01 BTC.

Open your free digital wallet here to store your cryptocurrencies in a safe place.

Amelia Tomasicchio

Philips announces its own Blockchain Lab

The Dutch multinational company Philips decided to open its own Blockchain Lab, a group of experts whose focus is the decentralized ledger.
After a half year of researches on the Blockchain, in fact, Philips announced its objective to use the distributed ledger technology for healthcare uses. 
Philips blockchain lab project developer

To do so Philips launched a call for developers and experts coming from the startup ecosystem who can submit their own CVs and apply “to work on several blockchain use cases”.
The call for talents from now on will be continuosly open, which supposedly indicates an evergoing interest of the company in developing new projects based on this disruptive technology. 
It’s always worth to remember that the innovation brought by the blockchain doesn’t impact the financial system only, but potencially has relevant implications in many aspects of our lives, including the secure transmission of information regarding our health.
The Philip Blockchain lab is located in the company’s headquarters in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. 
Head of the Blockchain Lab, Arno Laeven, commented:

“As a company committed to innovation you need to constantly explore new and emerging technologies and their application in areas where they might have an impact and added value. Our aim is to learn if blockchain technology could potentially add value to the process of data exchange in the healthcare industry.

Previous Statement

On October 2015, Philips Healtcare interest was announced in a Twitter post published by Wayne Vaughan, CEO of the blockchain startup Tierion, who reported that his company has been the first blockchain project within the Philips research perimeter on the subject.
tierion ceo philips project blockchain healthcare
 

Open your free digital wallet here to store your cryptocurrencies in a safe place.

Amelia Tomasicchio

How to use the blockchain to secure medical records

Guardtime, a blockchain platform for ensuring the integrity of systems, is now working together with the Estonian eHealth Foundation to develop a blockchain network to secure one million patient medical records.

eHealth will use the Guardtime’s KSI (Keyless Signature Infrastructure) into its database to improve the security and the real-time availability of patient medical records.

Guardtime aims at protecting those records with an “independent forensic-quality audit trail”, so it will be impossible to edit the information.

During a recent interview conducted by Coindesk, a spokesperson for Guardtime said:

“In guarding sensitive records, the danger is that they could be altered, deleted, improperly changed or updated, affected by hackers, malware, system issues, etc. The blockchain in this case can prove the integrity of the record, and everything that has happened to it over time”

Why in Estonia?

Maybe you are asking yourselves why this kind of innovation is being conducted in Estonia.

Well, Estonia is already famous for its e-government system which use a chip-embedded ID card that allows citizens to access government services including filing taxes and voting online.

Guardtime Insights

In 2007 Guardtime invented a “Keyless Signature Infrastructure”, a blockchain platform created to ensure the integrity of systems, networks and data at industrial scale.

Keyless Signature Infrastructure (KSI) is designed to provide scalable digital signature based authentication for electronic data, machines and humans. KSI uses only hash-function cryptography, allowing verification to rely only on the security of hash-functions and the availability of the blockchain.

According to the company itself, Guardtime’s method is similar to the one used by the blockchain startup Factom. In both cases, in fact, every time a file changes, a new signature is generated and stored in the blockchain.

Open your free digital wallet here to store your cryptocurrencies in a safe place.

Amelia Tomasicchio