Moldova Eyes Blockchain IDs to Help Curb Child Trafficking

Sujha Sundararajan
Nov 16, 2017 at 11:00 UTC
NEWS

The Eastern European nation of Moldova is mulling the use of blockchain technology to help combat child trafficking in the country.

To discuss possible blockchain-based solutions to the growing issue, digital identification experts from the U.N. Office for Project Services (UNOPS) attended a meeting this week in the Moldovan capital, Chisinau, a Reuters report states.

The lack of official identification documents puts rural children especially at risk of trafficking, according to the report, with fake IDs being used to move them across borders.

Reuters cites Yoshiyuki Yamamoto, UNOPS special adviser for blockchain, as saying the "immutable" tech could be used to provide digital IDs based on biometric data that can't be faked.

Mihail Beregoi, state secretary for Moldova's Ministry of Internal Affairs, told the news source:

"This is a pressing issue and we are eager to find efficient solutions to help us address it."

Just this week, the U.N. announced a partnership with World Identity Network (WIN) for the launch of a blockchain identity pilot to protect children from being illegally trafficked.

According to Mariana Dahan, chief executive of WIN, Moldova has become the first country to show a solid interest in the pilot project.

There have been reports of increasing sex trafficking and forced labor in Moldova. According to a recent classification of countries in terms of human trafficking by the U.S. Department of State, Moldova has been downgraded to Tier 2 level – meaning the absolute number of victims of severe forms of trafficking is significantly increasing.

Chained hands image via Shutterstock

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