ING Bank Releases Blockchain Privacy Tool Bulletproofs

Dutch global banking and financial services corporation ING introduced its new cryptographic blockchain development called Bulletproofs, according to an announcement on Feb. 7

Bulletproofs represents an extended technology for ING’s previous blockchain privacy-focused developments such as zero-knowledge range proof (ZKRP) and zero-knowledge set membership (ZKSM).

ING bank first launched ZKRP in November 2017, enabling market participants to maintain anonymity in a transaction while still confirming its accuracy. For instance, the tool allowed a mortgage applicant to prove their salary within a certain range without revealing the exact figure.

As an improved version of ZKRP, ZKSM was released in October 2018, purportedly providing a more powerful code to validate certain alphanumeric data without revealing contextual details in order to protect the overall security of data. As such, ING bank cited an example when banks can validate that a client lives in a country that belongs to the European Union, without revealing the exact country.

Bulletproofs is purportedly faster than previous zero-knowledge proofs. Since Bulletproofs does not rely on a trusted setup, parameters can be generated without a secret value, which purportedly provides a higher degree of trust for all the users on the blockchain.

Developed by researchers from Stanford University and University College London in partnership with blockchain startup Blockstream, Bulletproofs’ code is open-source on GitHub.

Earlier this year, ING signed a five-year contract with enterprise blockchain consortium R3 to access R3’s commercial blockchain platform Corda. According to the report, ING planned to implement Corda’s decentralized applications (CorDapps) across its global business infrastructure.

On April 12, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank jointly launched a private blockchain and a new asset Learning Coin. The new coin has reportedly no money value and is not a real cryptocurrency.