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Swiss Post and Swisscom launch a 100% Swiss infrastructure for blockchain applications
Communication dated 06.12.2018
Swiss Post and Swisscom are building a simple, secure and sustainable infrastructure for blockchain applications in Switzerland. They will use this, on the one hand, to operate their own blockchain services. On the other, they want to enable the Swiss economy to quickly obtain a leading position when it comes to using this promising technology.
The infrastructure is the first so-called "private blockchain" in Switzerland to be operated jointly by partners. It offers a solution that differs from other private blockchains in Switzerland in some key areas: The data will remain completely in Switzerland and the infrastructure meets the high security requirements of banks.
This is being made possible thanks to close cooperation: Swiss Post and Swisscom are connecting their existing private infrastructures for blockchain applications. On the basis of distributed ledger technology, the two instances check each other and thus help to establish trust. In contrast to "public blockchains" (e.g. Bitcoin and Ethereum), this private blockchain infrastructure requires much less energy, since it can only be used by identified users who have a contractual relationship with the providers of an application. This enables more efficient agreement procedures as well as significantly higher security and performance. This is an important prerequisite for many companies to launch their own applications based on blockchain technology. Swiss Post and Swisscom are thus creating attractive advantages for companies in all sectors and therefore also for Switzerland as a business location.
Two reliable, strong partners
Both Swiss Post and Swisscom are known for their reliable handling of sensitive information, and they have already implemented and are using blockchain applications. Swiss Post, for example, stores its temperature measurement data on a blockchain during the transport of pharmaceuticals. With "Blockchain for Utility" (B4U), PostFinance is running a pilot project together with Energie Wasser Bern (ewb). This enables owners of houses with a photovoltaic system to automatically bill their tenants via a blockchain for the electricity they receive from the system. And Swisscom is working with its subsidiary, daura AG, on a digital share based on blockchain technology.
First pilot applications from mid-2019
The two companies will use the common infrastructure, which is based on the "Hyperledger Fabric” software, for their own applications and will also make it available to other companies for their applications. The market launch for the first pilot applications is planned for the second quarter of 2019. The offer is geared towards companies and public authorities, which want to handle sensitive digital business processes securely and verifiably.
In order to support the operation of the infrastructure for blockchain applications even more broadly, Swiss Post and Swisscom are open to accepting other partners who would like to participate in the infrastructure.
Appearance at the Hyperledger Global Forum in Basel
From 12 to 15 December 2018, blockchain experts from all over the world will meet at the Hyperledger Global Forum in Basel. During this event, Swiss Post and Swisscom will present their project for a private blockchain for Switzerland to the public for the first time. Hyperledger is an overarching project covering open source blockchains and related tools that was launched by the Linux Foundation in December 2015, and which is being supported by companies such as Airbus, IBM, Intel, JP Morgan, SAP and Swisscom.
The Distributed Ledger Technology and blockchains
The basic technology for all types of blockchain applications is the Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT). DLT works like a digital journal: The partners involved in a transaction store the transaction data in a blockchain. This means that they can be viewed and checked by all partners in real time while maintaining confidentiality. The data cannot be changed retrospectively. Mutual control and the immutability of the data establish trust and ensure traceability. Because all partners access the same data in real time, blockchains simplify collaboration and enable greater automation of administrative processes.