In its bid to digitize the country, the Philippine government must also give a serious look into the blockchain technology because it will enable to develop trust in the bureaucracy.
This is according to Carlos Korten, president of Pasig and Hudson Private Limited Company, who said that governments can apply blockchain to create certainty and confidence in the eye of the people, the private sector, and the global community.
“For governments working to shed a reputation for corruption or inefficiency, blockchain offers a solution that can promote commerce, attract investment and create wealth by implementing infrastructure with unimpeachable security, transparency and reliability,” Korten said in an email interview.
The Filipino-American entrepreneur pointed out that a blockchain-based architecture is superior to other digital solutions because of the fact that the encrypted data is stored redundantly across many independent processing nodes.
In case an agent aims to delete a blockchain document in a single database, Korten said it would not work because other copies of the same document exist across the network and any falsification would be quickly identified and superseded.
“The fact that a blockchain has unassailable memory creates trust and confidence in the eyes of the community. There can be no suggestion of corruption or misappropriation when a complete audit exists on the blockchain as part of the immutable public record.
“Sweden, Honduras, and the Republic of Georgia have already announced plans to implement a Title Registry for their countries using blockchain technology. Many more are studying the implications of doing so,” Korten said.
Right now, Korten said several governments and central banks around the world are now studying the merits of their own national cryptocurrencies, powered by blockchain architecture.
He said blockchain is the key to digitize notary services, to issue digital passports, birth certificates, driver’s license and other government issued documents, into a secure format that can be stored on a mobile phone or on a flash drive.
Furthermore, Korten said the applications of blockchain are immense. “It can be used to develop digital keys for a individual’s car, to issue digital security badges for an office building, and to distribute manufacturer’s discount coupons over non-secure channels like email,” he said.
Although blockchain is a new concept in the country, Korten said observers are optimistic that its deployment could be beneficial to society just like the introduction of the printing press or the launch of the Internet.
At its core, Korten said blockchain can cause a disruption in governance as it can challenge a government’s historical privilege as the seat of centralized authority.