Using Blockchain In Travel Safety | Thought Leadership Thursday

Using Blockchain In Travel Safety | Thought Leadership Thursday


In my last Thought Leadership Thursday I
was discussing the importance of artificial intelligence and its impact
on Travel Safety. I went as far as to say it is the future of Travel Safety, and I
stand by that statement, that’s completely true. However I wanted to talk
to you about some new technology. It’s actually been around for some time but I would hazard a guess the majority of people
haven’t really heard of it and that is something called Blockchain. Now,
Blockchain is a technology that runs something you probably have heard of
which is a crypto-currency called Bitcoin. So let me just explain. What the
heck is Blockchain? Well Blockchain quite simply is a ledger. Now what do I mean by
a ledger? A ledger is something that simply records transactions. I go and buy
something, it gets recorded in a ledger and we can go back and we can check that
ledger any time to prove that I made that purchase. Okay, great. So if you think
about us in Travel Safety, the majority of people are spending a lot of money on
tracking services. They’re using people’s mobile devices and other technologies to
go and track where they are. Whether they’ve arrived at the airport, whether
they arrived at the hotel, where they are when they’re actually on their travels.
Now the difficulty is, and I know that Stuart’s already mentioned this in a
previous Thought Leadership Thursday is there’s a whole bunch of challenges in and
around that because it really relies upon the user; the person who owns the
device which you’re tracking. Because you can leave that at home you,
can leave that in a hotel room, you could even run out of battery, which is a
problem. So let’s just think about Blockchain. Blockchain is a ledger and
it’s a ledger that is completely secure. Now what I mean by that is a standard
ledger resides in one place. It’s a single database somewhere now that has a tendency to get hacked. People can get access to that, and people can
change it. Blockchain is very different. Blockchain is spread across millions of
computers. The ledger itself, all of the records are spread across millions of
computers around the world, so for you to be able to hack it you’d have to go and
find all of those computers, and hack each of those individually. Secondly,
every transaction is based on the previous transaction,
hence the ‘chain’. It is creating a chain of transactions, so for you to go
and then falsify something in the ledger, you’d have to go and rewind and falsify all of the other transactions. It is nearly impossible, they believe, to
crack this in any way shape or form. So we have this inherently secure way of
tracking transactions. Now think about our traveler. As a traveler, I will
automatically go through a number of transactions getting to my location. So
for example, I turn up at the airport, I go to the car park, the car parking
system makes the transaction. I then go up up to the airport itself and I go
and check my baggage in – another transaction I then get on the plane I
check it in the plane another transaction. I come through the airport
at the other side, they check my passport; another transaction. I go to my hotel
room, I check in there; another transaction. So as you can see, we can
create a really secure, very granular transaction history of our travelers,
meaning that we as travelers don’t have to worry about whether or not
we got our devices with us to help us stay safe. I think this is a very very
exciting development and we’re a couple of years off yet, because
to make this work we’ll have to get the buy-in of all the other parties, but
Blockchain is coming up incredibly quickly. Just the other day,
Reuters announced that the UN is thinking of using Blockchain for
identification globally. That is an amazing step forward, and shows you just
how quickly this technology is going to emerge. And here at eTravelSafety of
course we are looking at that technology now. We’re looking to see how
we can build into our solutions to help even more people stay safe than ever
before. I’d love to speak to some other people about Blockchain.
I’m always open to great conversation, so please do contact us, ask for James,
and I will speak to you. Many thanks.

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