The primary benefit of blockchain-based records for recipients is the ability to own and share them directly with others. Verification happens instantly by checking the blockchain to prove that nothing in the record has changed since it was originally issued.
People no longer have to rely on institutions to transmit their official records.
The ubiquity of smartphones makes ownership of digital assets possible at a massive scale. Smartphones are the most convenient way to generate and use digital key rings. Before a record is sent to an individual, their public key (their blockchain “address”) is retrieved and written into their digital record. All of this is cryptographically sealed and recorded on the blockchain. The record cannot be altered, and only the recipient with the corresponding key can prove ownership of that record.
How do recipients prove ownership of their records?
First, their unique public key is part of the record issued to them. Further, the mobile app provides the ability to prove ownership when requested. For example, individuals may use the app to sign a statement with their corresponding private key in order to demonstrate their identity in high-stakes situations. Only the owner of the corresponding private key can do this.
What is the easiest way for recipients to send us their public key?
Learning Machine provides a free mobile app for recipients to manage their keys and store their records. Upon downloading the app, a private key is generated for the recipient. Once they have their app, you can use Learning Machine to send them an email inviting them to add your organization to their app. This invite contains a link that will automatically list you as an issuer and send you their public key.
How can recipients recover official records if they lose their phone?
Records are issued to recipients as files which are attached to the email notifications they receive once the issuing process is complete. Records can be recovered at any time from the recipient’s email archive or from any place they have stored the files. Further, recipients can use a passphrase to regenerate their private key, which allows them to demonstrate ownership of records after importing them into a new phone/app. Read more about how recipients can manage their blockchain records.
Can recipients hold their records on multiple devices?
Yes. They can import records to their app on multiple devices. Again, entering their unique passphrase allows recipients to generate the same private key across these devices. While this key isn’t needed for records to verify, it is the only way they can prove ownership of their records.
Can recipients keep records from different organizations in one place?
Yes. The mobile app is designed to receive/import digital records from different issuing organizations. All records are organized into each organization’s folder for easy access. Recipients can also move their records into vaults provided by other vendors.
How do we ensure recipient access to records after they have been issued?
Once recipients receive a digital record from you, there is no longer an ongoing dependency on your organization to verify them. They can share their records directly with others, and verification can occur even if your organization ceases to exist. Of course, this shifts some responsibility to recipients for creating backups of their records. These are simply digital files, so they can be stored anywhere.
Can recipients delete their digital records?
Recipients can remove records from their mobile app, and they can delete all copies of the file which they possess. However, they cannot delete your copy of the file, nor can they remove the transaction from the blockchain.
What about the “right to be forgotten?”
This technical infrastructure of the blockchain preempts the need to erase unwanted history. With blockchain-based records, the power resides with recipients to reveal or conceal their data. No information can be seen without them explicitly choosing to share their records.
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