Kimberley Process Inches Closer to 'Blood Diamond' Blockchain

A global tracking scheme for conflict diamonds is continuing its internal blockchain trials, according to a new report.

AccessTimeIconSep 1, 2016 at 5:30 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 11, 2021 at 12:28 p.m. UTC
10 Years of Decentralizing the Future
May 29-31, 2024 - Austin, TexasThe biggest and most established global event for everything crypto, blockchain and Web3.Register Now

A new report from the chair of the Kimberley Process – an initiative aimed at keeping conflict diamonds out of the global precious stones market – indicates that the UN-backed scheme is moving forward with its blockchain work.

The internal trials currently underway were first unveiled earlier this year as part of work ongoing in connection with Dubai's Global Blockchain Council – a public-private initiative aimed at encouraging technology innovation.

While the report is light on fresh details – it promises an update several months from now – its publication highlights the continued interest of applying the blockchain to supply chain issues.

The report states:

"The KP Chair's office is committed to the examination of its benefits and is working on a potential pilot project that would use blockchain technology to monitor KP statistics. An update on the project will be provided at the plenary meeting in November 2016."

Those involved with the initiative hope to reduce the proliferation of fraudulent Kimberley Process certificates, or documentation that is shipped alongside diamonds attesting to their legitimacy.

But it's a system rife with fraud, and as Motherboard notes, the past decade has seen numerous instances in which fake certificates can fuel diamond sale scams.

The hope, therefore, is that introducing wholly digital certificates backed by an immutable ledger could help alleviate some of these problems. But as of yet, development toward this goal remains in the early stages.

It's a potential application that could alleviate some of the criticism the system has attracted over the years. As The Guardian explained in 2014, certificates are issued for batches of diamonds, not individual stones, which are then subsequently divided, cut and sold.

"Without a tracking system, this is where the trail ends," the publication noted at the time.

Image via Shutterstock


Please note that our privacy policy, terms of use, cookies, and do not sell my personal information has been updated.

CoinDesk is an award-winning media outlet that covers the cryptocurrency industry. Its journalists abide by a strict set of editorial policies. In November 2023, CoinDesk was acquired by the Bullish group, owner of Bullish, a regulated, digital assets exchange. The Bullish group is majority-owned by; both companies have interests in a variety of blockchain and digital asset businesses and significant holdings of digital assets, including bitcoin. CoinDesk operates as an independent subsidiary with an editorial committee to protect journalistic independence. CoinDesk employees, including journalists, may receive options in the Bullish group as part of their compensation.

Learn more about Consensus 2024, CoinDesk's longest-running and most influential event that brings together all sides of crypto, blockchain and Web3. Head to to register and buy your pass now.