Category Archives: Andrus Ansip

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European Commission to Use Blockchain to Curtail Fake News

According to a recently published press release by the European Commission (EC) on 26 April, the European Union (EU) executive plans to employ distributed ledger technology (DLT) to fight so-called “fake news”, the transmission of false information online.

The EC’s first step will be to introduce a plan as part of what will become the “Code of Practice on Disinformation”, an EU-wide program scheduled for publication by July 2018.

The commission says blockchain applications can help provide transparency, reliability, and traceability of news on the internet. It also added that DLT can be combined with other identification processes:

“Innovative technologies, such as blockchain, can help preserve the integrity of content, validate the reliability of information and/or its sources, enable transparency and traceability, and promote trust in news displayed on the Internet.”

The press release is a response the commission’s recent High-Level Expert report which revealed a need for more transparency online in order to fight the current surge of internet disinformation.

Earlier this year the EC announced the signing of a declaration to create a European Blockchain Partnership Initiative made of up 22 countries including Germany, France, and the UK.

A significant project is also underway is in the field of healthcare. The EU’s My Health My Data (MHMD) project “aims to use blockchain technology to enable medical data to be stored and transmitted safely and effectively”.

The latest plan to embrace blockchain technology to combat fake news can be seen as part of a larger plan to integrate fintech into the inner workings of EU administration. Vice president of the EC Andrus Ansip made a speech earlier this month urging EU governments to invest in blockchain technology both “politically and financially” as it emerges “out of the lab” and goes mainstream.

Blockchain development forms part of the EU’s research funding body Horizon 2020 Work Programme, and is considered by the EC as “the biggest EU research and innovation funding programme ever”. It is investing nearly EUR 80 billion of funding over seven years and promises “breakthroughs, discoveries, and world-firsts, by taking great ideas from the lab to the market”.

image source: https://pixabay.com/en/fake-fake-news-media-laptop-1903774/ – pixel 203

 

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EU Urged to Embrace Blockchain Technologies

Vice president of the European Commission (EC) Andrus Ansip has called for Europe to become a world leader in blockchain technology. Ansip said this at the EC’s Digital Day 2018 convention in Brussels on 10 April.

Ansip, who is also European Commissioner of the Single Digital Market, told the convention that Europe’s position as a leader in Artificial Intelligence (AI) positions the EU to take a prominent role in blockchain technology.

He urged EU governments to invest in blockchain technology both “politically and financially” as it emerges “out of the lab” and goes mainstream as other regions outside of Europe are clearly positioning themselves as business competitors. He pointed out that financial investment would be key and that “none of this comes for free”.

Talking specifically about blockchain technology, the conference’s Blockchain Partnership Initiative referred to “impressive investments in blockchain start-ups” in its preamble. It read:

“A significant number of member states have already started to pioneer blockchain initiatives with the aim of developing and reinforcing local innovation ecosystems and aiming to create governmental services on the blockchain.”

In total, 22 European countries have signed a declaration on the establishment of a European Blockchain Partnership, including Germany, France, and the UK. A significant project underway is in the field of healthcare. The EU’s My Health My Data (MHMD) project “aims to use blockchain technology to enable medical data to be stored and transmitted safely and effectively”.

Another blockchain project, DECODE, is “exploring and piloting new technologies that give people more control over how they store, manage and use personal data generated online”.

The Digital Day event aimed to bring together professionals from across the spectrum of digital technology and communication to promote the building of a “digitally strong EU”.

The EU has already invested more than EUR 80 million in projects supporting the use of blockchain in technical and societal areas. It promised that another EUR 300 million more is to be allocated to blockchain support by 2020.

 

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