The Polish credit bureau BIK wants to be the first in the world to manage its customers’ bank data using a blockchain. The largest financial institution in Eastern Europe, which is supported by the banks operating in the country, has obtained help from the British start-up Billion for this purpose. This was announced by the organisation in a press release this Monday. In future, the data of up to 24 million customers will be transparently backed up and deleted. The latter provides for an EU regulation to be implemented this month.
One million companies, 24 million customers, 140 million creditworthiness data – the figures alone suggest how ambitious the step that the Polish credit bureau BIK is taking this week is. Together with the British start-up Billion, Eastern Europe’s largest financial institution wants to use a blockchain solution to manage all of its members’ customer data. The technology will be used to transparently collect, secure and delete the data of almost all banks active in Poland.
This is what the corresponding press release says
“Billion’s blockchain technology will support BIK’s work with maximum security, integrity and immutability of the data. The solution guarantees absolute visibility, traceability and full data integrity for all customer-related documents.”
In addition to the usual bank data, these also included credit agreements, insurance claims and telephone bills. If it goes after the conceptions of the BIK, should not be however here conclusion. Rather the Blockchain data system promotes a “true revolution”, according to the press release.
“We believe that blockchain technology will transform how the financial sector communicates sensitive data with its customers. Our solution will soon be extended to electronic data transmission with automatic confirmation and signing of online agreements”,
BIK President Mariusz Cholewa describes his institute’s future plans
EU regulation prescribes “right to forget
As stated in the press release, particular attention will be paid to ensuring that the initiative is also legally sound. The project is to be coordinated with the EU General Data Protection Regulation, which will start this year. This provides possibilities for customers to control their own data. This includes, among other things, the “right to forget” – i.e. the deletion of data.
As early as 2017, the EU’s innovation fund had provided trillions of euros worth of two million, thus setting the pilot for the BIK blockchain in motion.
Poland, on the other hand, is currently in a difficult relationship with Brussels. This recently reached its lowest point with the introduction of Article 7 in the rule of law procedure. In the course of this process, EU funding, among other things, had recently been suspended.
The banking union BIK, in which PKO Bank Polski and the Polish subsidiaries of ING, BNP Paribas and Citigroup are involved, seems to want to avoid future confrontation by fulfilling the EU requirements.
While BIK and Billion insist on being the first in the world to launch a corresponding blockchain solution for customer data in banking, the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs is currently testing a similar approach. Part of the “Blockchain Research Agenda” launched last week, for example, is to be technology-based data management. As with the BIK project, this should grant the “right to forget” as required by the EU regulation.