Over the past three years, the number of cyber-attack and fraud incidents targeting the banking industry have increased tenfold causing banks to lose millions to fraudsters and hackers. PKO BP, Poland largest bank, is embracing blockchain for document verification in order to prevent these kinds of fraudulent activities.
In early 2018, PKO BP announced that it had partnered with Coinfirm to provide a solution that could validate that received documents were authentic and verified by the account holder. This process is facilitated by Trudatum, Coinfirm’s blockchain platform that stores important bank documents in an immutable ledger. The companies have successfully completed the proof of concept that started over a year ago and are now planning to integrate the blockchain technology with the bank information systems. This initiative is a key milestone in the European banking industry as PKO BP is one of the first banks to publicly admit that it is using blockchain technology to manage its clients’ documents. Once the integration is completed, the Polish bank will be able to authenticate millions of customers’ documents and transaction records.
Banks have to constantly manage large volumes of digital files including financial products terms and conditions, applications, contracts, digital proof of transactions, as well as sensitive client information such as collaterals. Trudatum can facilitate the management of these digital files by providing blockchain-based storage that keeps this information secured. The documents are issued in the Trudatum ledger in the form of an immutable hash file using the bank’s private key to secure them.
According to one of the PKO BP directors, Grzegorz Pawlicki:
“Blockchain meets the key requirements for durable media, guaranteeing confidentiality and integrity of the documents delivered to clients, which additionally increases the attractiveness of this technology for the banks”.
This eliminates fraud risks where an individual or business purposefully uses false information or alters bank documents to complete a business transaction.
Coinfirm’s unique approach to verification using blockchain made this innovation possible. Coinfirm’s founders Pawel Kuskowski, Maciej Ziolkowski, and Pawel Aleksander, are experienced entrepreneurs in blockchain technology and banking. They created Coinfirm out of frustration from the banking industry’s inability to properly manage anti-money laundering (AML). Kuskowski, in particular, has experience working on AML technology that is applicable in many facets of the banking industry. Coinfirm refined the idea and created Trudatum as a fast and convenient tool that banks and business partners can use to verify bank-related details.
The partnership between Coinfirm and PKO BP is a clear example of how blockchain technology can help improve security in the banking industry. This initiative indicates a considerable change in perception that banks are apprehensive to adopt blockchain technology. In this instance with its blockchain project, the Polish banking leader is gaining tremendous value and is becoming an innovation trailblazer in the industry.