Last week Forbes published an article on how Blockchain has the potential to overhaul supply chain. Supply chain is essentially the entire system involved in moving a product or service from supplier to customer. Blockchain is best known as the technology behind Bitcoin, but innovators like faizod are currently working on projects to use Blockchain to track the movement of products and information.
The article by Forbes mentioned the idea of using electronic tracking technology with Blockchain to speed up supply chains by adding intelligence, and claimed that Blockchain holds the promise of big changes for the way people understand business networks.
Pioneering a tracking system prototype
faizod is currently paving the way in this area, working together with a logistics company to pioneer a prototype of such a Blockchain-based tracking system. The prototype pairs Blockchain with radio frequency identification (RFID), which uses radio waves to transmit information to a reader.
RFID is already used in vehicle identification, banknotes, payment cards, identification of people and animals, time recording, and much more. faizod imagines this technology being implemented to fight fraud in the fashion industry by setting up an identification mechanism for counterfeit products.
Blockchain is an invariable, highly available, and distributed database in which all data written in are tamper-proof and can be protected against unwanted access via encryption. All transactions are entered chronologically and blocks are then formed and closed with a checksum. Each block contains the checksum of the previous block and many copies are then created and distributed, which means that no central unit controls the chain.
The Blockchain-RFID solution
The circulation of counterfeit products in the fashion industry costs billions each year and decreases the value of products for retail customers. The combination of Blockchain and RFID will be useful not only in identifying counterfeits, but also in production and inventory control, warehousing, distribution, logistics, and automatic object tracking.
The identification of originals could be carried out regardless of time and place with the help of an RFID chip. If a product did not contain an RFID chip, or contained an RFID chip that was not registered in the Blockchain, it would be treated as a counterfeit.
Plausibility checks could also be carried out based on location. The same product occurring simultaneously at opposite ends of the earth would indicate a counterfeit. The tracking history of a good would be the equivalent to an authenticity certificate, thus increasing value for retail customers.
Transparency and trust on the horizon for the fashion industry
The prototype that faizod is creating allows authorized participants to log in and see the relevant tracking information, also available on an app for Android an iOS. New entries can also be created using the app, and mobile devices can be directly liked to an RFID scanner.
Forbes claims that Blockchain implementation will enable more intelligent business processes because the trust would be distributed and the processes would be completely transparent. faizod’s newest prototype will offer just that.