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New Pilot Offers Anonymous Secure Data Transfers, from Chronicled

By Ken Briodagh July 31, 2017

In a recent press release, Chronicled, a security developer, has announced the completion of a technical pilot demonstrating a cryptographic method of anonymously transferring a Serialized Global Trade Item Number (SGTIN).

SGTINs identify individual items as they move through multi-stage supply chains, which can often involve multiple custodians and geographic locations. Using an applied cryptographic verification model known as Zero Knowledge Succinct Non-Interactive Argument of Knowledge (zk-SNARK), developed by University researchers at UC Berkeley and MIT, this program allows multiple independent parties to verify an object's identity and provenance without directly interacting with one another or a centralized database. This enables secure and anonymous transfer of possession and/or ownership of SGTINs within multi-party supply chains.

In addition to removing trust barriers and multi-party friction and bottlenecks, Chronicled's technical pilot represents the first step towards full prevention and elimination of the entry of counterfeit products and components into the supply chain. Within the cryptographic framework of the pilot, an SGTIN can be in the possession of only a single trading partner at any given time. Any duplication will alert the network to the existence and location of a counterfeit asset.

The first market vertical that Chronicled is tackling with the methodology -- in partnership with The LinkLab -- is the pharmaceutical supply chain. An FDA regulatory regime called the Drug Supply Chain Security Act (DSCSA) calls for full end-to-end track and trace of pharma products by 2023 on an interoperable platform. However, under conventional approaches, the pharmaceutical industry fears the leakage of sensitive business intelligence that could tip-off their trading and financing partners about purchasing patterns and business volumes.

"Our team has been working hard on this key privacy issue, and as a result Chronicled is now the first to successfully demonstrate this cryptographically secure method of anonymous physical asset identity transfer," said Ryan Orr, CEO, Chronicled. "As an immediate next step, we plan to continue to work with industry partners to implement current supply chain workflows using this technology while optimizing for volume, aggregation, returns, recalls, and performance considerations."

Data written to a blockchain are transparent and immutable and do not rely on central databases or human intermediaries. Because of this, the zk-SNARK methodology is not susceptible to human error or conventional hacking. The framework piloted by Chronicled is designed to prevent any leakage of company identity, shipment information, and transaction volumes and makes the usage of a blockchain ledger resistant to unwanted usage or analysis of data by an industry analyst or malicious third party. Associated smart contracts allow a regulator to fully and reliably audit the provenance of an asset after the fact, without the need for prior knowledge, continuous monitoring, or the need for trust in the various organizations operating within the supply chain.




Edited by Ken Briodagh

Editorial Director

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