Governments around the world are trying to find ways to improve public services with blockchain. According to a report from Deloitte—which is likely already outdated considering the fast development of the technology—more than a dozen countries around the world are running pilots.

China is one of them. The country’s effort to grab its position in the emerging technology has been an ongoing project: blockchain was written into the 13th Five-Year Plan in 2016. The effort is apparently paying off. During 2017, the country became the number one in the world for blockchain patents with its central bank, the People’s Bank of China (PBoC), topping the list, according to research by IPRdaily and incoPat. Building virtual identities for its citizens—the cornerstone of many other applications to come—has become a top focus.

THEKEY, a blockchain startup specializing in government data commercialization under a company called E-BaoNet, is trying to put social insurance on the blockchain. The first step in accomplishing that is securing a robust ID verification system but the task is even more important considering it involves sensitive health information.

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Masha Borak

Masha Borak is a technology reporter based in Beijing. Write to her at masha.borak [at] technode.com. Pitches with the word "disruptive" will be ignored. Read a good book - learn some more adjectives.