Marsh and IBM build blockchain for proof of insurance

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Marsh and IBM have developed a commercial blockchain solution for proof of insurance.

Developed for ISN, the blockchain will enable the company to check and verify the insurance policies of the contractors and suppliers that it manages.

Marsh built the solution on the open source Hyperledger Fabric technology and the IBM Blockchain Platform, with input from the Association for Cooperative Operations Research and Development (ACORD) and customer feedback from ISN.

The new blockchain network will go into production later this year. ISN is the first Marsh client to pilot the solution.

“The insurance industry has been dependent on paper certificates of insurance, manually populated by an insurance agent,” commented Brett Parker, technical insurance lead at ISN. “By digitising the policy information, we can streamline the process saving our customers time to focus on their core competencies.”

As a distributed ledger technology, blockchain is suited to large networks of partners, according to Marsh. It establishes a shared, immutable record of all the transactions that take place within a network and then enables permissioned parties access to trusted data in real-time.

Since proof of insurance is a key business requirement in many industries, this blockchain solution opens the door to creating a network of networks to provide verification on a much broader scale.

Sandip Patel, general manager for the insurance industry at IBM, commented: “Vastly simplifying the process for providing proof of insurance is a key enabler of business. IBM is committed to connecting emerging blockchain networks to facilitate the next generation economy. This is an ideal example of how blockchain can be used on a much broader scale to drive real business results.”

Sastry Durvasula, chief digital officer and chief data and analytics officer at Marsh, added: “Marsh sees great opportunity in leveraging blockchain technology to better serve our clients by maximising efficiency and creating new opportunities in the insurance value chain. We believe strategic engagements such as this one with IBM, ACORD, and ISN will help accelerate the adoption of further blockchain applications benefiting our clients across industries.”

Bill Pieroni, president and CEO of ACORD, added: “This blockchain solution is key to evolving standards, enhancing data leverage, and enabling state-of-the-market technology to better integrate ACORD members and foster innovation.”

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Mark Dugdale is the editor of Claims Media. Mark welcomes articles, letters or feedback from readers and can be reached via mark.dugdale@barkerbrooks.co.uk