IBM continues to relentlessly pursue blockchain technology development. In July, IBM won a five year AUD 1 billion contract with the Australian government to provide data security-enhancing technologies, including blockchain, artificial intelligence, and automation. As of Aug. 31, 2018, the tech giant ranked second worldwide in terms of the number of blockchain-related patents filed to date, second only to China’s Alibaba. Last week they filed a patent for a blockchain-powered system that aims to deter augmented reality (AR) game players from intruding on undesirable locations, which sets and maintains safe boundaries between AR objects and real-world physical locations.
Now, Seagate Technology and IBM are working together to reduce product counterfeiting with the use of blockchain and security technologies. The project is designed to help manufacturers, integrators, and business partners fight counterfeit hard drives. It creates a whole new level of multi-layered security protection for the data management industry.
Seagate will update the IBM Blockchain Platform on the IBM cloud with product authentication data at the point of manufacture. The product authenticity at each and every point in its life cycle will be verifiable by its assigned unique identifier. Level of permission determines who can append and view the blockchain, so vendors, service providers, and end users will have an immutable record of events regarding their product’s provenance.
Bruce Anderson, global managing director of electronics industry at IBM, said that “Counterfeit electronics components are a global issue that requires an ecosystem-wide effort to address.” Blockchain and advanced cryptographic product identification may be the solution. Seagate’s Certified Erase also employs cryptographic erasure technology to produce a digital certificate of data purge. The certificate is electronically signed by the device and stored on the blockchain for compliance management with emerging global data privacy laws.