Blockchain Enabled Firearms Solution Ensures Instant Verification of Ownership and Safe Transfer While Maintaining Data Privacy
TORONTO, July 12, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — VeriTransfer™ today announced the completion of its Proof-of-Concept (“POC”) of the first publicly announced Blockchain enabled solution that decentralizes the process of storing the ownership rights and transfer of firearms.
VeriTransfer™ is also pleased to announce that it will donate a percentage of all future revenues or the proceeds from any future sale of the company towards foundations whose mission is to end gun violence and build safer communities.
The Gun Epidemic & The Economic Impact
The United States hosts 4.4% of the world’s population, but almost 50% of the 644 million civilian-owned guns globally are located in the U.S. Disturbingly, more American citizens have died as a result of gunshots in the U.S. since 1968 than on the battlefield of all the wars in American history from 1175 to 2015. In addition, the estimated annual cost of fatal and non-fatal gun violence to the U.S. was $229 billion, representing 1.4% of total GDP1.
There have been 154 mass shootings in the United States since January 1st, 2018. This includes 23 school shootings that have occurred as of June 30th, 2018 in the U.S. where someone was either hurt or killed. That averages out to more than one school shooting a week2.
The Potential Bipartisan Solution
VeriTransfer’s mission is to help increase public safety, mitigate firearm-related deaths, all while empowering firearm owners to safely manage the ownership of their firearms and maintain complete data privacy. The decentralized and private structure of the VeriTransfer system gives full ownership of firearm data to the licence holder, while empowering law-abiding citizens to reduce the flow of firearms into criminal or suicidal hands.
Mathieu Glaude, CEO of Northern Block, the Toronto-based blockchain product development company is excited about VeriTransfer’s potential societal impact. “We see the management of firearms as a perfect use case for blockchain technologies. Empowering individuals and retailers to privately manage their firearms in a decentralized manner is powerful and it presents an optimal solution to the unresolved gun control problem.” said Glaude.
“We are incredibly excited to be involved in a real-world use case of blockchain technologies that has the potential to save lives,” said Kesem Frank, COO of AION. “This is all achieved while maintaining data privacy and has the potential to eliminate data silos within government agencies.”
VeriTransfer is a distributed system that decentralizes the storage of the ownership of firearms. The application makes it easy for any licenced firearm owner/retailer to manage their firearm inventory. Additionally, firearm holders can use VeriTransfer to digitally store a Government-issued licence, if applicable. VeriTransfer makes it simple for users to transfer firearm ownership at point-of-sale (B2B or B2C) or between licence holders (C2C) by scanning a QR code of the purchaser’s licence using their mobile device. Additionally, firearm retailers can use VeriTransfer to perform licence eligibility checks prior to transferring firearm ownership to another person (e.g., selling a restricted firearm).
VeriTransfer is not a gun registry, it’s a decentralized application that gives full ownership of firearm data to the licence owner. Firearm owners can be confident that their firearm data remains private and in their control at all times. Details about someone’s identity, firearm licence (if applicable), and firearm ownership remain fully confidential and can only be accessed by external parties if consent is provided.
With blockchain technologies, the VeriTransfer decentralized application (dApp) uses permissioned smart contracts for users to access data from the blockchain. Firearms are turned into unique digital tokens, similar to the ERC-721 non-fungible token standard developed for Ethereum. These unique tokens are tied to engraved serial numbers or RFID-chipped firearms. Firearm ownership can be transferred between licence holders by sending these tokens electronically between the blockchain addresses of the licence holders. There’s no need for users to acquire tokens, since they are automatically created through the system every time a firearm is added to the network.
AION is an all-in-one blockchain network that enables hybrid architectures, scalability and interoperability for solutions built on top of it. AION allows building interoperable permissioned blockchains that has the ability to scale to an enterprise level.
Key Smart Contracts
Many functions of VeriTransfer™ rely on smart contracts within AION. A smart contract is a collection of code and data that resides on a specific blockchain address. They can facilitate, verify and enforce access to blockchain data between different users. Smart contracts can be described as a specific data slot on a blockchain that can be queried and changed by calling its functions.
In VeriTransfer™, a firearm licence holder’s data is managed through the following smart contracts:
1. Licensing Smart Contract. Anytime a firearm licence is issued to an individual, a transaction is sent to VeriTransfer’s permissioned blockchain. This smart contract records the fact that a person has a licence and stores the hashed validation of this fact to the permissioned blockchain. This allows for immutable track records of firearm holders to be kept on the blockchain.
2. Firearms Smart Contract. This maintains the record of gun ownership represented by a digital token within the contract and associates it with a specific individual. Retailers and firearms holders can pass the ownership from one to another, and the smart contract will facilitate the transfer of the digital token between users that are registered on a blockchain and have a blockchain address.
These two smart contracts interact with one another. Every new firearm registered in the system creates a new unique token that can be associated with a dealer’s / individual’s blockchain address.
The completion of the VeriTransfer™ Proof-of Concept is significant, as this process and key technology can be replicated in a bespoke manner for the US market, while dually maintaining data privacy without violating the Second Amendment of the United States Constitution. VeriTransfer is currently in discussions with various parties in order to commence a Pilot Project in Canada and/or the United States with selected firearms dealers and government agencies. You can find a link to our Whitepaper and video demo of the application here: Veritransfer.io
VeriTransfer™, is the first known Blockchain enabled distributed system that decentralizes the process of the storage of the ownership rights, and transfer of firearms.
T: +1 647 256 1986
CEO, Northern Block Inc.
T: +1 647 991 8863
T: +1 647 970 3736
- Michelle Singletary, The Washington Post, February 22, 2018; Mother Jones Report.
- Gun Violence Archive, 2018.
A photo accompanying this announcement is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/830e7a9e-b315-46f6-8a35-a0b46d84dc81