U.S. National Archives and Records Administration Considers Blockchain to Verify Records Amid Rise in Deepfake Videos

From an article by Jory Heckman published in the Federal News Network:

“The National Archives and Records Administration is exploring whether blockchain technology can help records management officials keep track of their vast stores of information, following the successful rollout of the emerging technology elsewhere in government.

“Eric “Kyle” Douglas, a records management policy and program support specialist for NARA’s chief records officer, said the future for blockchain looks promising, and could play a role in authenticating digital copies of its images and videos.

“Verifying tamper-free versions of documents could prove useful to guard against deepfake videos, which are created by machine-learning algorithms that can manipulate images and audio to make it appear as though public officials have said or did something they did not.”

“NARA already tested a version of this technology last year, when it released nearly 20,000 government documents on the 1963 assassination of former President John F. Kennedy. Douglas explained that each of the bulk downloads included a ‘hash’ in the metadata that allows users to validate that the digital material had not been altered.”

The full story is available in the Federal News Network at: http://bit.ly/2XEjBZ7.

NOTE: A blockchain is a growing list of records, called blocks, which are linked using cryptography. Each block contains a cryptographic hash of the previous block, a timestamp, and transaction data. A blockchain’s contents cannot be changed by anyone, not by hackers, privacy thieves, identity thieves, governments, or even by the blockchain’s owners.

Blockchains are best known for insuring the integrity of cryptocurrency information, including Bitcoins, Ethereum, Ripple, Cardano, and others. However, blockchains also have many other uses wherever the authenticity of digital information is absolutely necessary.

For more information about blockchains, see Wikipedia’s explanation at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blockchain.

One Comment

Thank for this, Dick. As a retired IBMer, I’ve been following the development and uses of blockchain because IBM is heavily invested in it. I love seeing new applications.

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