Blockchain Tech Has Numerous Applications for Defense.

Author:Gatto, James

* The use of blockchain technology is gaining traction in all industries. The federal government has taken notice and has been exploring ways in which the technology may be used for its benefit.

While widespread use of blockchain in government likely will take time, it may be jumpstarted by the adoption of these capabilities by government contractors. One example of this is in the aerospace and defense arena, where such contractors can effectively utilize the technology to track and trace component parts, mitigate supply chain vulnerabilities, and effectively store and share vast quantities of in-flight data. Use of blockchain in the industry is just a part of the story. As detailed below, it will be used in many ways throughout the government.

Significant and rapid changes in the adoption of blockchain tech warrant the attention of government contractors. Potential blockchain solutions in government have the ability to, among other things, enhance secure data exchange and provide reliable access to information, facilitate device tracking, streamline the procurement process and ensure supply chain security. This can lead to greater efficiency as well as significant cost savings.

Many federal government agencies are experimenting with and embracing the benefits of blockchain technology. This will undoubtedly lead to greater use in the coming years. According to the General Services Administration, "agencies are eager to better evaluate and adopt distributed ledger technologies (like blockchain) that use encryption and coding to improve transparency, efficiency and trust in information sharing."

Agencies are exploring the use of blockchain technology that may impact many areas, including: IT asset and supply chain management; patents, trademarks and copyrights; and identity management. The Department of Health and Human Services is leading the pack, with major blockchain projects in production. One of these, HHS Accelerate, aims to save the agency time and money by providing greater access to secure, standardized data and significantly reducing administrative processing time. This efficiency will be applied to acquisition, with HHS using blockchain to combine procurement data sets in a secure cloud to identify cost savings and streamline contract formation.

The Department of Treasury and the Army are pursuing programs for device tracking using blockchain. Treasury is focused on mobile device tracking, which will allow it to better manage its...

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