Ever wondered if the money you donated to charity is actually being used on the cause you want to support, or just squandered away? Blockchain, the innovative distributed ledger technology at the heart of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, might finally provide the answer.
The Chinese Alibaba Group’s finance arm, Ant Financial, has reportedly created a private blockchain to record all donations on its “Ant Love” charity platform linked to Alipay. Sometimes called the Chinese PayPal, Alipay sits at the heart of Jack Ma’s (the richest man in China) e-commerce empire as the dominant online payments provider in the country with over 400 million users.
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“We hope to bring more transparency to charity and blockchain technology’s decentralized nature fits that purpose well. It means that all the information and transaction history of funds will be more reliable and can’t be easily tampered with,” Ant’s Chief Technology Officer Cheng Li is quoted by Bloomberg.
Having an independent record of the donations an entity gets will hopefully keep bad actors from abusing donors’ trust – a thorny issue in China and many other places. When the expenses of the entities will be transparent as well on a blockchain that goal will be achieved without having to blindly trust the people who manage them.
Of course if you are anywhere else in the world and want to make sure your donation is permanently recorded on a public blockchain – just make a donation with Bitcoin.