Last week, the United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS) awarded approximately $600,000 in grants to companies working on potential governmental applications of blockchain technology.
Out of the 29 companies that DHS doled out a combined $3.1 million to, six of them received funding to work on blockchain development in two different sub-fields – “the applicability of blockchain technology to identity management and privacy protection,” and “blockchain applications for homeland security analytics.” Each company was awarded roughly $100,000 by the DHS Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) for competitive research.
Companies receiving grants from DHS were spread out across Pennsylvania, Washington, Virginia, and the District of Columbia. Funding for research into identity management was awarded to Digital Bazaar Inc., Celerity Government Solutions LLC, Narf Industries LLC, and Respect Network Corporation. For research into applications for homeland security analytics, grants were given to BlockCypher and RAM Laboratories LLC.
The potential governmental applications for blockchain technology are diverse. From a military and security standpoint, various organizations have their own ideas for the blockchain and the prospective safety measures it offers. The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) has shown interest in the possible use of blockchain applications in the battlefield, while the U.S. Department of Defense reportedly sees potential for more expansive, internal use of the technology. The Defense Advanced Research Project Agency (DARPA) has announced that it is seeking a secure messaging system using a decentralized ledger – a key feature of blockchain – to send encrypted communications. This type of technology has recently been implemented abroad for governmental use in the form of a messaging app that enables law enforcement professionals to establish secure identity and communicate safely.
Read more here – “US Government Awards $600k in Grants for Blockchain Projects,” (Stan Higgins, CoinDesk)