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Korea’s Banking & Financial Sector Gain Blockchain Security Upgrade

Last Updated March 4, 2021 5:01 PM
Samburaj Das
Last Updated March 4, 2021 5:01 PM

The Korea Financial Investment Association has laid claim to the world’s first commercial blockchain used by financial firms for customer security.

Industry body Korea Financial Investment Association (Kofia) has announced the implementation of Chain ID, a blockchain identification platform that will see a number of securities firms and merchant banks securely share customer information for online identification.

In a conference on Tuesday, Kofia chairman Hwang Young-key revealed that the decentralized identification service was developed using smart contracts and the private blockchain platform used by a consortium of investment companies and blockchain startups led by Kofia. As reported by CCN.com in late 2016, the consortium sees 21 financial companies and five blockchain technology collaborating to develop blockchain solutions for the sector, making it the country’s first comprehensive blockchain consortium.

In essence, the service will enable customers to use the share their blockchain-based certificates and data across all participating financial institutions of the Kofia consortium without the need for a verifying central authority like the Korea Information Certificate Authority (KICA). Chain ID will see its launch in November via Android and iOS apps ahead of a rollout of desktop versions.

Developed by Seoul-based blockchain startup theloop, Chain ID is merely the beginning for what will ultimately be a sweeping adoption of blockchain systems among society, according to the company’s CEO Jonghyup Kim.

The blockchain executive stated:

Chain ID goes beyond merely replacing Korea’s outdated banking certificates. It puts blockchain into the pocket of every Korean, setting the stage for widespread use of blockchain-based transactions in a new blockchain-powered financial ecosystem. Blockchain is the future.

An initial pilot of the security and identification platform will be made available across 11 securities firms ahead of a wider launch, according to a Korea Herald report.

In related news, South Korea’s securities exchange operator, the Korea Exchange (KRX), has already launched a blockchain-powered platform for startups to trade equity shares. Dubbed ‘Coinstack’ the cloud-enabled platform records documents with a focus on identity authentication and notably supports all protocols and applications built on both the Bitcoin and Ethereum blockchains.

Featured image from Shutterstock.