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South Korean blockchain firm Coinplug has announced that it will integrate new services into B PASS, Busan’s DID-based mobile identification app. The new services, which are scheduled to launch in the second half of the year, include a transportation card and an access card for unmanned convenience stores.
Founded in 2013, Coinplug offers a bitcoin exchange, electronic wallet, and online point-of-sales service for Korean users. The company is continuously innovating in the field of blockchain, focusing in the areas of Identity & Authentication (Decentralized Identity, Self-Sovereign Identity), Payment Solutions and Assets Management. Coinplug is the official operator of the Busan Blockchain Regulation-free Zone.
In 2019, Busan was appointed as the country’s special zone for blockchain innovation, with President Moon highlighting the importance of the development of new regulatory approaches towards new technologies such as blockchain. Since then, a list of services based on the technology have been deployed in the city, including B PASS, the Public Safety Report, B Tour, Busan’s Digital Voucher, B Fresh, and the Busan Citizen Card, among others.
The Ministry of Science and ICT has announced the next step: transportation and convenience stores services, which are present in everyone’s daily life, will be integrated into the blockchain. In the same announcement, the ministry stated that it “plans to spare no support to develop blockchain services that people can enjoy”.
The blockchain-based mobile transportation card will be developed by Coinplug and operated in cooperation with Cash Bee Card (LOCA Mobility), the leading prepaid transportation card in Busan City and its surroundings. With the newly developed card, individuals will be able to issue and customize it (general, youth, multi-child, etc.) using B PASS on their smartphone. This service will provide peace of mind to users knowing their personal information is protected with blockchain and the risk of loss or theft is significantly reduced by not having to carry a plastic card. The B PASS-based transportation card will work in subway rides, buses and taxis.
Coinplug will also integrate an access card for the unmanned GS25 convenience stores, the leading convenience store chain in South Korea. Due to the covid-19 pandemic, the demand for untact (no-contact) services has grown, and so has the number of unmanned convenience stores in the county. At the moment, these establishments require customers to sign up for access verification by providing personal and credit card information. With the integration of the new service in B PASS, users can access the stores without having to provide any personal information to third parties. The application of DID technology eliminates the risk of information leakage by delivering the identity verification through a QR code.
“By integrating two important services, as are transportation and convenience stores, Coinplug continues to bring blockchain technology into people’s daily lives.” said Coinplug CEO Ryan Uhr. “We will keep working with the Busan City Government and link more services to further expand the reach of our technology. Our goal is to bring this convenience to the rest of the country.”
In addition to these projects, the Ministry of Science and ICT appointed Coinplug for three more. These include a blockchain-based maritime crew qualification system, a non-face-to-face identification and payment platform and a blockchain-based identification system for O2O order/delivery services.