China’s Audit Office Considers Blockchain for National Data Management

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China’s National Audit Office has revealed a proposal for the use of blockchains to improve data management procedures.

NAO is responsible for the auditing of all government-related financial transactions in China, as well as the management of a centralised data centre which serves as the storehouse for information provided by its subordinate offices across the country at all levels.

In a statement published on its official website on 24 April, NAO said that it is currently grappling with the “infinite expansion of data centre hardware and software equipment,” as well as an “endless cycle of data storage and management.”

For this reason the agency is considering the use of a blockchain solution for the generation and updating of data, as well as the encryption and decoding processes that safeguard data during transmission or access.

This would involve each subordinate office of NAO serving as an accredited node that bears “equal rights and obligations” for the gathering, maintenance and management of data.

The central data centre would only be responsible for saving timestamps and monitoring the security and legality of data operations conducted by subordinate offices, while smart contracts would also be used to automate data management.

NAO expects the use of such a solution to achieve a considerable reduction in its workload.

While Beijing launched a heavy-handed crackdown on cryptocurrrencies towards the end of last year that kicked off with a ban on initial coin offerings, the Chinese central government, and the People’s Bank of China in particular, have been emphatic in its support for the use of blockchains in other fields of application.

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