Digital certificates are the virtual representations of traditional paper-based certificates. They help reduce the time and costs associated with issuing certificates, as well as errors and forgery.
But digital certificates aren’t limited to educational credentials alone? That’s right! The potential of Blockchain Technology and digital certificates has now been accepted and applied across a large number of sectors, many of which can benefit immensely and immediately.
Securing and verifying critical evidence for legal proceedings? Verifiable and tamper-proof Covid vaccination certificates and passes? We are just beginning to scratch the surface in terms of the potential of digital certificates here!
For today, let us have a look at the various sectors where digital certificates are currently making their presence felt, and we’ll also take a brief glimpse into their future potential.
Digital certificates in Covid care
In March 2021, the Government of Singapore took advantage of an open-source digital standard for issuing digital COVID-19 test result certificates. Thanks to this step, any traveller who undergoes a COVID-19 test at an authorised clinic in Singapore will receive their test results as a digital certificate automatically loaded into a digital platform.
Furthermore, these certificates can be viewed and shared at airports as an attachment or URL. These digital certificates are developed by the Government Technology Agency of Singapore in collaboration with the Ministry of Health (MOH), in order to help the movement of travellers at immigration checkpoints in their airports.
In India, the centre is working to create digital vaccination certificates that are globally valid. These are soon going to be in operation, and will showcase the full records of vaccination courses of an individual, verified by Blockchain technology at the issuing clinic. These certificates will be uploaded and stored on to a digital platform created by the Government, and will also be available for quick downloads on mobile smart-phones.
Digital certificates for carbon credits
Basically, carbon credits are certificates that showcase either:
- The quantity of greenhouse gases emissions that a company has reduced via energy efficiency measure, or
- The quantity of greenhouse gases removed by a company via carbon capture processes or forestation drives, or
- The quantity of greenhouse gases avoided by a company via their reduced deforestation measures, etc.
Therefore, the more carbon credit a company holds, the more their operations fall in line with the standards set by local environmental agencies. The unique thing here is that if a company cannot stop greenhouse gas emissions, it can still earn (buy) carbon credits by either asking other companies to emit less, or go on forestation drives.
Accordingly, companies involved in the buying or selling of carbon credits can use a decentralized exchange platform on Blockchain to trade Carbon credits. Here the design of Blockchain Technology allows for instant authentication, creation of smart contracts between suppliers, manufacturers, logistics networks, etc., and their integration into a single rule-based network that follows standardized operations.
Also, it facilitates the creation and storage of digital carbon credit certificates which can report the correct figures associated with each member of the network, and the shareability and transparency associated with these certificates makes it easier for environmental agencies to receive and validate them quickly.
Digital certificates in law and order
Until now, prosecutors and court officials had to rely upon third-party organizations in order to authenticate or validate digital evidence. This third party involvement entails a lot of costs and time which can be reduced by adoption of blockchain technology.
Take for example, an important documentary evidence related to a crime scene. By uploading the same to the judicial blockchain network, the transparency of how the digital evidence was produced or modified, as well as availability of complete information of all it’s previous custodians, would allow for seamless verification of the evidence’s digital transaction history.
Also, blockchain is being used to secure corporate records. These records are increasingly being used across countries when it comes to matters of corporate law.
Digital certificates in News and Media
The famous media giant Verizon recently launched an enterprise portal for its Certificate Services platform. The platform can create digital certificates for large-scale (Internet of Things) IoT operations.
Known as Verizon’s Managed Certificate Services (MCS) platform, it is used to verify object and machine ID’s in the IoT network, in order to facilitate the secure exchange of information between all nodes connected across the network. Generally speaking, most media companies use a lot of IoT devices in today’s day and age, and therefore, the platform provides a cost-effective and easy-to-use system that can manage identity and data integrity associated with IoT devices. In an age where cyber-security is of paramount importance, these certificate services can save companies a lot of money.
Digital certificates in the education sector
There are plenty of problems associated with traditional paper-based education and training certificates. There is the issue of data privacy, as these certificates often have to be transferred across multiple administrative bodies and/or unverified third party reviewers, and so the issuer and student have no control over access/read and write rights. Moreover, there is a chance that credentials can be mistakenly or purposely tampered with.
This is where a Blockchain technology platform like Certif-ID can make a difference. Upon receiving the credential data from awarding bodies, the documents – which can also include instructor testimonials, proof of project work, etc., are encrypted onto the blockchain. Once this is done, unalterable links are created between a student’s achievement and their digital credentials. Also, these digital credentials can be easily shared to recruiters via a unique wallet URL. Not only does this reduce time of issuing, sharing and verification of certificates, but also makes them completely tamper-proof, thereby completely removing the possibility of fake credentials.
All in all, no matter the sector, digital certificates powered by blockchain can introduce a great sense of transparency and security into operations. Blockchain’s decentralized nature demands that any change made in a participating system in the network has to be validated by at least 51% of all participants in the network, thereby ensuring super secure storage, verification and management of data – no matter the type of task at hand.
Also read: Three pillars to drive employability skills to our students https://www.nationalskillsnetwork.in/three-pillars-to-drive-employability-skills-to-our-students/
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