After SBI, ICICI, Axis Bank and many other banks having already rolled out blockchain-based solutions as pilot projects, more than a dozen insurers including HDFC Life, India First Life and Canara HSBC OBC, have now jointly started another blockchain project to help rein in costs for companies running medical tests and evaluations, reports ET
The insurance companies have tied up with IBM and Cateina Technologies to create a blockchain-based solution for KYC, medical records, and agent track records while flagging fraudulent transactions.
Subrat Mohanty – senior executive vice-president, head-strategy, HDFC Life stated, “Blockchain technology has the potential to change the way financial services transactions are carried out.”
For blockchain-based banking solutions, SBI had formed a banking community called BankChain to explore and implement blockchain platform. BankChain is a community of 27 banks from India and the Middle East. ICICI Bank, Kotak Bank, DCB Bank and Axis Bank are also part of this community.
BankChain aims to reduce fraud and maximise efficiency, security and transparency in the banking system. The community has also collaborated with Pune-based Primechain Technologies.
In the insurance sector, it currently takes a lot of time and effort to identify and validate records multiple times for customers. PwC observed, “Insurance often lags behind other sectors of financial services in modernising its business processes and technology. This reflects the need to work with large clients, provide bespoke cover, and manage specialist risks; these require data-heavy interactions between multiple participants including brokers, insurers, and reinsurers.”
This is exactly why insurers want to develop blockchain-based solutions to smoothen the entire work chain and reduce instances of delay. Additionally, blockchain would provide a record of information that can be accessed in a secure manner, said Mohanty.
Rajiv Kumar, MD and CEO at Universal Sompo General Insurance, stated, “Blockchain has already made its way to the banking industry. Its use in insurance will reduce operating costs by automating manual processes of requesting, exchanging and entering data in areas of underwriting, claims and reinsurance.”
While the government is playing down cryptocurrencies by likening them to Ponzi schemes, the underlying technology of blockchain has been recognised as the latest disruptive technology that could potentially change the way transactions and data-flow records are maintained across diverse verticals such as banking, insurance, agritech, healthcare, energy, supply chain and government services. Although most of the blockchain projects are currently at the pilot stage, the platform marks a huge potential for startups and entrepreneurs in these verticals.