The South Korean agency charged with military acquisitions has launched a blockchain pilot project aimed to improve business operations in the defense sector.

The Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) announced Wednesday that the effort would involve building a blockchain platform to, among other benefits, prevent “illegal alteration” of defense business data.

Working with DAPA on the initiative are Korea’s Agency for Defense Development and Defense Agency for Technology and Quality. Together, the three agencies hope to improve the “credibility” of defense procurement operations by recording the acquisitions process, from initial bids to final evaluation, on the blockchain.

In addition, management of business proposal submission would be automated, eliminating the “inconvenience” of the traditional paper document process.

The blockchain system would also have potential roles outside acquisition, helping “reduce the burden” on defense companies by allowing unified management of firearms transportation permits and notifications, DAPA said.

Kim Tae-gon, senior planning and coordination officer at DAPA, said that the project is part of the agency’s plan to deploy blockchain within defense business systems and provide innovative public services.

Various South Korean government agencies have been trialing blockchain in the public sector over the last year.

Last September, the Korea Internet & Security Agency (KISA), a sub-organization of the Ministry of ICT, said it would double the number of blockchain pilot projects in the public sector from six last year to 12 this year. The agency said at the time that it would boost the blockchain pilot budget for 2019 to more than $9 million, in addition to the previously set funding of $9 million for both 2018 and 2019.

The country’s Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning and Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries have also launched a blockchain pilot aimed to bring new efficiencies to the container shipping industry.

South Korean soldiers image via Shutterstock

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