IBM Rolls Out First Highly Secure Blockchain Services for Financial Services, Government and Healthcare on IBM Cloud

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To help speed the adoption of Blockchain for business, IBM (NYSE: IBM)  today announced a new framework for securely operating Blockchain networks, as well as new services on the IBM Cloud that are designed to meet existing regulatory and security requirements.

“Clients tell us that one of the inhibitors of the adoption of Blockchain is the concern about security,” said Jerry Cuomo, vice president, Blockchain, IBM.

“While there is a sense of urgency to pioneer Blockchain for business, most organizations need help to define the ideal cloud environment that enables Blockchain networks to run securely in the cloud.” 

After working with hundreds of clients, startups and developers building Blockchain applications, IBM is addressing their security needs in several ways, including cloud services with the highest Federal Information Processing Standards (FIPS 140-2) and Evaluation Assurance Levels (EAL) in the industry to support the use of Blockchain in government, financial services and healthcare. The company is also making it easier to use IBM’s code based on the Linux Foundation Hyperledger Project in any environment, and offering services on Bluemix, IBM’s cloud platform, to help developers quickly build applications.

Blockchain networks are built on the notion of decentralized control, but some cloud environments leave back doors open to vulnerabilities that allow tampering and unauthorized access. Working with teams of security experts, cryptographers, hardware experts and researchers, IBM has created essential new cloud services for tamper-resistant, trusted Blockchain networks.

With the opening of the IBM Garage this month in New York City, IBM is also working with clients such as BNY Mellon to accelerate the design and development of a unique application for securities lending, using a Blockchain network to trade and transfer assets.

“At BNY Mellon, we are actively exploring Blockchain’s potential to better serve our clients and our company,” said Suresh Kumar, CIO, BNY Mellon. “With this new initiative, IBM is providing an environment that will allow companies like us to collaborate more easily and more securely and in a more standardized way, which is critical to advancing meaningful use cases for Blockchain.”

Defining a Security Framework for Blockchain in the Cloud

Built to help businesses quickly host secure, tamper-resistant networks and scale to thousands of users, IBM Cloud will allow production Blockchain networks to be deployed in minutes, running signed, certified and tested Docker images with dashboards and analytics as well as support.

These new cloud services have been optimized for cloud-based Blockchain networks by providing an auditable operating environment with comprehensive log data that supports forensics and compliance. Tamper-resistant storage of crypto keys and complete protection around the cryptographic module detects and responds to unauthorized attempts at physical access. Additionally, the IBM Cloud services enable Blockchain peers to run in protected environments to prevent leaks through shared memory or hardware.

“Blockchain is a highly innovative and promising technology. However there are a lot of issues to be solved for enterprise systems,” said Eiji Ueki, director and executive vice president, NTT DATA.

“IBM’s new Blockchain cloud service is directly trying to address those issues. We believe this will help accelerate the maturation of Blockchain technology.”

IBM’s Blockchain for Hyperledger Now Available on DockerHub

For organizations that need the flexibility to run Blockchain on different cloud servers or devices, a signed, certified distribution of IBM’s code submission to the Hyperledger project is now available on Docker Hub. Ongoing updates will provide new features including dashboards, analytics, chat support and exclusive network services.

IBM Blockchain for Bluemix Provides Developers New Flexibility

For application developers who want to get a Blockchain environment running almost instantly and start building applications, the beta release of IBM Blockchain on Bluemix provides access to the very latest Linux Hyperledger code, updated as the code continues to emerge. Whether on Docker Hub or IBM Cloud, IBM Blockchain supports multiple industries and diverse use cases.

“Bluemix Services make it easy for Factom developers to work with IBM Blockchain code,” said Paul Snow, Chief Architect of Factom. “IBM is the single largest contributor to open source technology and the Internet would not be what it is today without their contributions. Exploring Blockchain technology with IBM is exciting and our approaches are complementary. We are thrilled to see how they will help grow the industry.”

Join IBM during the Consensus Building Blocks Hackathon 2016, where developers will be challenged to use IBM’s Blockchain service on Bluemix to rapidly build innovative applications incorporating services such as IBM Watson, IBM Internet of Things, The Weather Channel Data and others. Voting, risk management, finance, healthcare, insurance, supply chains and IoT are some of the systems that are poised for dramatic change using Blockchain networks. 

For more information, visit: www.ibm.com/Blockchain.

About Richard Kastelein

Founder of industry publication Blockchain News, partner at ICO services collective CryptoAsset Design Group (helped raise over $200m+), director of education company Blockchain Partners (Oracle Partner) and ICO event organiser at leading industry event  CryptoFinancing (first ICO event in Europe) – Richard Kastelein is an award-winning publisher, innovation executive and entrepreneur. He sits on the advisory boards of half a dozen Blockchain startups and has written over 1200 articles on Blockchain technology and startups at Blockchain News and has also published pioneering articles on ICOs in Harvard Business Review and Venturebeat.
 
Kastelein has spoken (keynotes & panels) on Blockchain technology in Amsterdam, Antwerp, Barcelona, Beijing, Brussels, Bucharest, Dubai, Eindhoven, Gdansk, Groningen, the Hague, Helsinki, London, Manchester, Minsk, Nairobi, Nanchang, San Mateo, Shanghai,Tel Aviv and Venice. His network is global and extensive.
 
He is a Canadian (Dutch/Irish/English/Métis) whose writing career has ranged from the Canadian Native Press (Arctic) to the Caribbean & Europe. He’s written occasionally for Harvard Business Review, Wired, Venturebeat, The Guardian and Virgin.com and his work and ideas have been translated into Dutch, Greek, Polish, German and French.
 
A journalist by trade, an entrepreneur and adventurer at heart, Kastelein’s professional career has ranged from political publishing to TV technology, boatbuilding to judging startups, skippering yachts to marketing and more as he’s travelled for nearly 30 years as a Canadian expatriate living around the world.
 
In his 20s, he sailed around the world on small yachts and wrote a series of travel articles called, “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Seas’ travelling by hitching rides on yachts (1989) in major travel and yachting publications. He currently lives in Groningen, Netherlands where he’s raising three teenage daughters with his wife and sailing partner, Wieke Beenen.

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