When Satoshi Nakamoto published the Bitcoin whitepaper almost a decade ago, no one could have predicted the present state of the industry. What we’re currently experiencing in terms of publicity, hysteria, and skepticism towards blockchain technology is only comparable to the dotcom revolution of the late 90s.
Sadly, much of this noise circulating centers around price volatility of crypto-assets, scams, lack of regulation, and other somewhat negative facets that have become synonymous with the words “bitcoin” and “blockchain.” Lamborghinis and yacht parties have dominated the crypto headlines, and consequently, the numerous projects utilizing blockchain technology to create a positive impact are left with limited recognition and lacking the spotlight they deserve.
Take companies like BitGive which uses cryptocurrency to raise funds securely, or Charity Stars, which enables ultimate transparency in their online auctions for good. Projects like these show that the blockchain can be used for so much more than financing the latest supercar.
When I founded ULedger over 2 years ago, I knew that philanthropy would be a critical part of our work. That’s why we’re excited to announce a new program which will offer our blockchain technology for free to some of the most vital public entities: universities and nonprofits.
Whether to transfer value, secure data, or vote peer-to-peer, the potentials for blockchain technology, aside from being a vehicle for raising large sums of money, are immense. Organizations across all industries and sectors can and will benefit from this technology. Large corporates and well-funded startups will be the first to move but it’s these critical public entities that are most reliant on data protection and integrity that will be left behind.
Public universities and nonprofits are notoriously underfunded on the basis that investment in these entities will never yield a profit. However, public reliance on these organizations is continually growing and it’s unfair to assume that our governments should be the one to remedy all of their shortcomings.
Sensitive personal information, medical records, company accounts and credit card details are just examples of datasets whose integrity we depend on and as it stands, bad data costs the U.S. $3 trillion per year. Both organizations and individuals spend countless hours and dollars to protect the integrity of data as it’s manipulation, forgery, or deletion could be catastrophic and in the case of business; a potential killer.
Poised with our mission to “make the world’s data honest,” ULedger acts as an overlay to existing infrastructure, making data integrity both scalable and affordable to those who need it. In the nonprofit sector, some blockchain benefits are already being realized.
“The reason that the blockchain is really important is because people don’t need to trust each other, they need to trust the tool,” – Ben Siegel of Consensys. There is no sector in as much critical need of public trust as the nonprofit sector. Lack of transparency towards the beneficiary of our donations, coupled with various scandals, have led the public towards widespread apprehension of who the final recipient of our donation truly is. This forces our charities to compete for increasingly scarce resources. While we still believe in the importance of nonprofits, this isn’t displayed in our philanthropic efforts and trust is the reason why.
The solution to improving this existing scenario is blockchain technology. As assets on the blockchain are non-fungible, donations are 100% traceable all the way through to the end beneficiary. Transformative tech like blockchain means that we no longer need to place faith in unfamiliar people and entities. At ULedger, we feel so passionately about the charity sector that we’ve decided to offer our blockchain solution free of charge to any charitable or nonprofit institution requesting our services. The future of all charitable work depends on the public trust; and that is exactly what we hope to provide.
It’s broadly believed that the education industry is poised to see substantial developments through the advent of blockchain technology. Fake degrees and tampered records are just some of the issues being dealt with by those running higher education institutions. Considering the enormous time and financial cost of completing a university degree, it’s alarming to think that even today, many are securing employment on the false premise that they have a degree.
Blockchain technology could be used to create a secure public ledger with academic qualifications to curb fake degrees. Digital documents are easy to alter in ways that are undetectable to the human eye. However, as long as the digital copy of a degree provided to an employer hashes to the same output as what is stored on the blockchain, the document is proven to be the original.
It can be tough to stay grounded, and disregard the idea that blockchain technology is going to solve all of the world’s burning problems. However, there are, without doubt, changes and upgrades we can make today that can shape the times ahead. By beginning to offer our service for free to universities and nonprofits, we believe that we can instill a new sentiment within the space; one full of prosperity, community and trust.
Josh McIver is the CEO of ULedger, a leading provider of blockchain solutions, ULedger deploys a versatile API blockchain solution that meshes with existing technology infrastructures. ULedger currently counts AI, insurance, financial services, and healthcare companies as clients and also services a Big 4 accounting firm.