Tech

Steve Kaaru

100 Japanese manufacturers to share info securely with blockchain

100 Japanese manufacturing firms are set to begin using a blockchain-based system to share information with each other. According to a report by Tokyo-based financial outlet Nikkei, the manufacturers believe the initiative will help them improve efficiency, with blockchain technology ensuring the data is shared securely.

The report revealed that multinational electronics manufacturer Mitsubishi Electric and industrial robotics manufacturer Yaskawa Electric will be among the companies that will take part in the initiative. The Japanese division of Germany’s cutting machine tools manufacturer DMG Mori is also expected to become a member of the project.

Over time, manufacturers have ensured they safeguard all the information they collect with the belief that sharing it could aid their competitors. However, that belief is being challenged in modern times. Now, sharing information with other companies is being viewed as the best way to improve performance and increase efficiency.

The new project will allow the participants to select how much data they wish to share, whether to make this data available to everyone or a select few, whether to charge a fee for the access of the data and more.

The implementation of the project will be overseen by Industrial Value Chain Initiative (IVCI), a group formed by manufacturers to promote the research and the use of the Internet of Things (IoT) in the manufacturing industry. IVCI has been in existence since 2015, but this will be its first blockchain venture.

While most of the original members of the new blockchain project will be the big corporations, IVCI intends on bringing the smaller firms on board as well. These companies stand to benefit the most as they’ll get access to data which was previously a preserve of the large corporations.

The project will foster the sharing of information that other members stand to benefit from. For instance, two companies that produce the same products could share data that would help them learn about the most effective supply and distribution strategies, enabling them increase efficiency and reduce overheads.

IVCI turned to blockchain technology to lower the risk of data leaks which could hurt the members. With no centralized servers, cyber criminals will have an almost-impossible task of accessing the system. The use of blockchain technology is also expected to lower the cost of operation.

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