- ING, a Netherland-based bank, has announced a new programme called Zero-Knowledge Set Membership (ZKSM) solution.
- The program will enable user privacy to be protected by revealing data as ranges rather than as specifics.
- This could signal a new era in user data protection.
Privacy is a more heavily discussed topic among institutions that deal with consumer information following recent scandals involving the misuse of user data such as the Cambridge Analytica scandal.
Blockchain to the Rescue
It seems now that blockchain technology could be used to ensure the security of user data. This comes following a recent announcement by ING Bank.
The Netherlands-based lender has announced during the recent Sibos banking conference that it will launch Zero-Knowledge Set Membership (ZKSM) solution.
The bank had previously launched the use of Zero-Knowledge Bank Proofs which gives bank customers some degree of privacy.
This is a simplified bank version of Zero Knowledge Proof. The ZKP is essentially a way to prove knowledge of some particular information without actually divulging the information.
Zero-Knowledge Bank Proofs run on blockchain and can be used for customer information that makes use of figures. For example, customers can apply for a number of services and provide a range of their income without actually revealing the specific figure.
The use of Zero-Knowledge Set Membership (ZKSM) solution allows this concept to move beyond just numbers and applies it to concepts such as geographic location.
In this case, a customer can provide some information about the region they live in, such as Eastern Europe, without stating their actual country of residence.
This ensures an unprecedented level of privacy for users. In this case, users can apply for various services while maintaining privacy surrounding personal details such as their location and income.
Should this program succeed and gain wide adoption, it could help to set a precedent regarding the privacy rights of bank customers worldwide.
ING has made sure to perfect the blockchain technology being used for its services, subjecting it to review by Madars Virza, one of the founders of zcash.
According to Annerie Vreugdenhil, ING’s head of wholesale innovation, this new development represents the next step in privacy protection using blockchain.
“At ING, we are fortunate to have some of the best minds in the industry working on our programme, and we are excited that our groundbreaking solution is now ready to be implemented and tested.” said Vreugdenhil.