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US Space Force taps blockchain firm Xage Security for data protection

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The recently created United States Space Force, or USSF, and the U.S. Air Force Research Lab has chosen blockchain firm Xage Security to develop data security systems.

In a statement, Xage Security said it was awarded a contract to provide end-to-end data protection for the USSF. The company will employ its blockchain-based Xage Security Fabric solution for the project.

The company said Xage Security Fabric has a unified platform that can secure all systems and removes single points of entry so hackers can’t wipe information. It will allow the USSF to verify who accesses systems, ensure satellites continue to function securely even if ground equipment goes offline, and protect data until fully transferred to operational units.

This is the second contract Xage Security won from the U.S. Air Force, following the first one signed in December 2019.

The USSF was established in December last year to defend space and acquire military space systems. According to the University of Illinois, space systems are infrastructure and vehicles that work together to perform outer space tasks. These can be satellites or even spaceships. Since many space systems heavily rely on communication and geographical positioning, it’s crucial that data being sent through cannot be compromised.

Xage Security CEO Duncan Greatwood said blockchain meets many of the complex needs of the USSF:

“The USSF requires decentralized enforcement of security to establish space domain resilience and objective situational awareness––across every asset and data element. We built the Xage solution to serve the needs of complex critical infrastructure systems, and are excited to bring the Xage solution to the Space Force in the form of a blockchain-protected space system security.”

The U.S. Department of Defense, which oversees all military branches including the Air Force and the USSF, has been interested in blockchain for a while. It awarded Indiana-based blockchain firm Simba Chain a contract to provide security for sensitive research and development data in March this year. The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or DARPA, has also been involved in blockchain since 2019.



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Polish city becomes first to adopt Ethereum blockchain for emergency services

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Olsztyn, Poland is reportedly the first city in the world to leverage Ethereum’s blockchain to aid the provision of emergency services, offering yet another tangible use case for distributed ledger technology. 

Olsztyn has completed a successful trial run of SmartKey, a bridging technology that connects blockchain with physical assets, to aid in police, fire and ambulance services.

SmartKey will reportedly enable rescue teams to perform their jobs more efficiently by connecting a smart contract to Teltonika smart devices that are used by local rescue teams. This connection enables emergency crews to enter any building in the city without having to track down a keyholder or wait for permission.

Gustaw Marek Brzezin, the marshall of the Warmińsko-Mazurskie Voivodeship in which Olsztyn is located, issued the following statement:

“The need for our rescue services to perform their duties without obstruction is a delicate one. The use of blockchain and SmartKey technology seems to be like the perfect solution, giving reassurance to building owners and inhabitants, but also freedom for our emergency services.”

SmartKey believes blockchain technology can lay the groundwork for the development of smart cities. Although definitions vary, a smart city refers to any urban area that leverages emerging technologies and sensors to collect data, which can then be used to manage assets, resources and services more efficiently. As a paradigm, smart cities feed into other theories about sustainability and economic development.

The Internet of Things, or IoT, could have major implications for future smart cities. Connected devices are thought to represent one of the biggest growth opportunities of the next decade. The World Economic Forum, for example, has identified IoT as an important pillar of “urban transformation,” especially after COVID-19.

Several cryptocurrency projects operate in the IoT niche, the largest being Iota (MIOTA) with a market cap of $825 million. At least a dozen others have a market cap of $1 million or more.