Blockchain technology could help protect the homeless

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April 19, 2018
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Blockchain technology is most often discussed in terms of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, but this technology is being considered for another purpose too. Governments and private organizations are seeking to put the blockchain to work solving some of our society’s biggest problems. The city of Austin, Texas the state of US, is launching a program meant to help the homeless protect their identities in the event that their IDs are lost or destroyed.

The program is part of a grant awarded by Bloomberg Philanthropies and aims to solve one of city’s most pressing issues with the homeless, which concerns keeping their identities secure.

Sly Majid, Austin’s Cheif Services Officer said:

“If you have your backpack stolen or if your social security card gets wet and falls apart, or if you are camping and the city cleans up the site and takes your possessions, you have to start all over from the beginning again.”

Unluckily for many homeless people, the loss of an ID or Social Security number can make it impossible for them to get the help they need, because they have no way of proving who they are, and they cannot always afford to pay for new forms of identification.

The city is hoping that it will be able to use the blockchain as a replacement for paper records which can easily be stolen, lost, or destroyed. The idea is that the blockchain can provide a secure and safe way to aid workers by verifying a person’s identity.

Overall, this program launched in the US aims to use the technology can help solve the problem of homelessness, though the authorities are worried that the project is in its early stages. However, he is hopeful that the program will grow over time.

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