IBM has launched IBM Blockchain, which the company describes as “the first enterprise-ready blockchain service based on the Linux Foundation's Hyperledger Fabric version 1.0”. Developers will be able to build and host blockchain networks on the IBM Cloud, which can potentially transact at rates of more than 1,000 transactions per second. This is of particular relevance to financial services companies. IBM's Marie Wieck said: “IBM has applied decades of experience running the world's largest transaction systems for banks, airlines, governments and retailers, to build the most secure blockchain services for the enterprise.”
The company also launched the first commercially available blockchain governance tools, and new open-source developer tools that automate the steps it takes to build with the Hyperledger Fabric from weeks to days. The governance tools enable companies to set up a blockchain network and assign roles and levels of visibility from a single dashboard. Network members can set rules, manage membership, and enforce network compliance once the network is up and running.
This will almost certainly open the doors to more financial services for corporates as well as consumers. One of the prominent user cases for the IBM blockchain developer tools is the development of identity networks, which could facilitate authentication and access processes for bank accounts and many other instances where secure identification is necessary (such as car hire or, in the corporate context, access to and authorisation for payment systems and sensitive data).
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