The Biggest US Automaker Turns to Blockchain to Help Save Millions in Identity Theft

General Motors Financial has partnered with blockchain company Spring Labs to help reduce identity theft. It’s a move that could potentially save the car maker millions of dollars in fraud costs. As CCN previously reported, 95% of carmakers expect to use blockchain technology in the next three years, but General Motors is leading the pack. The partnership will see GM Financial, the finance branch of General Motors, join Spring Labs’ Spring Founding Industry Partners Program. The initiative is designed to advance the role of blockchain in data sharing. This is…

Here’s How the Gov’t of Seoul is Using a Public Blockchain in the Real-World

The government of Seoul is using ICON, the largest blockchain project in South Korea by valuation, to process information, issue documents, and conduct a wide range of administrative tasks. On February 8, the Seoul Metropolitan Government moved forward with its plans to develop a blockchain ecosystem with the people of Seoul by creating the Seoul Blockchain Governance Team. The Seoul Blockchain Governance Team is composed of 40 college students, 30 normal residents, 20 blockchain developers, and 10 industry experts. The team will develop, test, and deploy distributed ledger-based systems in…

High School Team Places Third in Barclays Blockchain Challenge Event

If understanding how distributed ledger tech works inside banks is complex, finding ways to make different varieties of enterprise blockchains talk to each other is a doozy of a challenge. And yet, that’s exactly what a team of high school students – soon to sit their A-Level exams in computer science – has done. The team, from Bedford School in the U.K., won third place in a blockchain interoperability hackathon hosted by London-based blockchain startup Clearmatics at the Barclays Rise fintech hub in London. The challenge set by Clearmatics, which is…

Japan Megabanks Kill Joint Blockchain Money Transfer Project, Turn to Their Own Cryptocurrencies

Three of Japan’s biggest banks have canceled a joint project of a blockchain-based peer-to-peer money transfer service. The three so-called Japanese ‘megabanks’, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group and Mizuho Financial Group, said the joint venture was a duplication of their individual efforts. They thus saw no need to continue, according to the Nikkei Asian Review. Per the Japanese publication, the joint initiative would have allowed their customers to send and receive funds using email addresses or mobile phone numbers via virtual accounts linked to their bank accounts.…

2 Executives Are Leaving Blockchain Startup R3 in Management Shake-Up

Distributed ledger technology provider R3 has carried out an extensive internal reorganization, resulting in the departure of two members of its management committee, CoinDesk has learned. Brian McNulty, a managing director and head of global services, and Lauren Carroll, chief administrative officer, are leaving the company, R3 told employees at town hall meetings Friday, according to people familiar with the situation. An R3 spokesperson confirmed the internal reorganization, which he said will include an expansive hiring program for 2019, but declined to comment on individual staff departures. Neither McNulty nor Carroll…

IBM, Aetna, PNC Explore Medical Data Blockchain for 100 Million Health Plans

IBM is collaborating with a group of major players in the healthcare space to improve the way sensitive data is shared and make health claims and transactions more efficient – all in the form of a “blockchain-based ecosystem.” Announced today, Big Blue is joined in this effort by Aetna (acquired last November by pharmacy and health plan provider CVS Health), health plan provider Anthem, Health Care Service Corporation (the largest customer-owned health insurance provider in the U.S.) and PNC Bank. These providers combined account for close to 100 million healthcare…

Nasdaq Leads $20 Million Funding Round for Blockchain Startup Symbiont

Enterprise blockchain startup Symbiont has closed a $20 million Series-B funding round led by Nasdaq Ventures with participation from Galaxy Digital, Citi, Raptor Group and others. The firm, which has kept a fairly low profile the last two years as the cryptocurrency market’s gyrations overshadowed the enterprise sector, previously raised a combined $15.4 million from a seed round in 2014 and Series A in 2017. Symbiont CEO Mark Smith told CoinDesk that the firm doubled its staff last year, and now has more than 60 employees. “We have been very…

Wanchain Joins Telefónica, One of the World’s Largest Telephone Operators, Developing a Mobile Blockchain Future

Blockchain Phone. Image from Shutterstock. Wanchain Symbol Eleven Paths, a subsidiary of Telefónica, has tapped Wanchain in an effort to build a secure blockchain platform for the mobile generation. Rivetz is a security company which works extensively in the blockchain space and also plays an important role in the new effort. Wanchain is an Ethereum fork which specializes in cross-chain compatibility. With Wanchain, users can hold both Bitcoin and Ethereum. In an exclusive talk with Wanchain’s Dan Reecer, CCN learned that its interchain operability is what sets Wanchain apart in…

Ford, IBM, LG Partner to Track Your Smartphone & Car Batteries on a Blockchain

Car charger image from Shutterstock South Korean battery maker LG Chem, tech giant IBM, auto manufacturer Ford Motor and others have partnered in a blockchain project aimed at infusing transparency in the global mineral supply chain, impacting batteries used in smartphones and electric vehiceles. Specifically, the project will track cobalt mined in the Democratic Republic Congo. Cobalt is used in lithium-ion batteries and its demand and price has skyrocketed with the growth of electric vehicle and mobile device sectors. It is estimated that DR Congo produces around two-thirds of the…

Why Ford Believes Blockchain Can Help Fight Child Labor

Ford has partnered with IBM to use blockchain to fight child labor in the cobalt mining industry. | Source: Shutterstock Automotive giant Ford has entered a partnership with IBM, Huayou Cobalt, and LG Chem to build a blockchain platform to monitor the supply of cobalt from the Democratic Republic of Congo as part of an attempt to ensure that child labor does not make up any part of its supply chain. Ford & IBM Partner to Monitor Cobalt Mines Announced on Wednesday, the project, which will be managed by the…