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ICAS and PwC to issue certifications via blockchain

Newly qualified CAs working for PwC are able to trial a platform which uses blockchain technology to validate professional credentials.

PwC’s digital ledger Smart Credentials allows CA’s to store, transfer, and share their credentials in real time which it says should reduce exposure to fraud.

In the pilot of the system, the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland (ICAS) will issue the digital certificate to recently qualified CAs. This certificate then forms part of their digital wallet. It can then be updated with ongoing personal developments and shared with others on request.

ICAS CEO Bruce Cartwright said: “Data protection is arguably one of the most enduring challenges of our time. Our newly-qualified members involved in this trial can now take control of their personal data by replacing the paper-based certificate with a secure digital version.

“Not only this, but the technology allows instant verification of their credentials, putting an end to the back-and-forth involved in establishing good standing and ensuring our members can get on with their jobs.”

PwC global blockchain leader Steve Davies said: “The ability to prove your identity online is critical in today’s digital world and the same is true of the qualifications you hold.

“We’re seeing high demand for verified, trusted and irrefutable identities from many different types of organisations, but a common challenge for employers is ensuring that an applicant holds the credentials listed on their CV.

“Like many others, I take pride in the certificate hanging on my wall but cannot take it down and share it when I need to, or keep a digital record of my ongoing professional development.

"Blockchain is traditionally associated with financial uses given its link to cryptocurrencies, but there are a wealth of potential use cases for this emerging technology and one of them is in overcoming the challenges of digital identity."

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