Sony and Fujitsu have teamed up to develop a blockchain platform that will fight back against the rise of fake educational qualifications in Japan.
Tech giant Sony has partnered with IT services and solutions provider Fujitsu to build an encrypted database which will help prevent forged Japanese proficiency documents, reports The Asahi Shimbun.
The rise in forged documents has helped foreigners obtain resident status to study in Japan.
The two companies have developed the database utilising blockchain technology. It is believed that the companies plan to roll out the distributed ledger as a test operation at the end of the month prior to an April launch.
Foreigners who want to obtain residency status in Japan have to submit certificates to Japan’s Immigration Bureau which can verify they have passed relevant tests.
The tests may pertain to Japanese language proficiency or prove a foreigner has taken a Japanese language course for a set amount of hours.
Typically, these certificates are issued abroad by Japanese language educational institutions. Japanese language schools located in Japan then submit the documents to the Immigration Bureau on behalf of the institutions.
Reportedly, there have been many illegal fabrications of such documents.
Qualifications will be recorded on the blockchain
The two companies have combined Fujitsu’s online learning system with blockchain technology developed by Sony’s subsidiary Global Education Inc.
Now, whenever a foreigner is studying Japanese in their respective country, all of their data and certificates issued will be recorded on the blockchain.
Japanese language schools can then compare the issued documents with the data recorded on the blockchain to verify them.
Since blockchain is a type of distributed ledger technology, it is difficult to fabricate documents. This is because the network is distributed across many peers who can verify data – if something is false, it will not be recorded.
The test operation will be conducted for roughly a month at Human Academy, which is responsible for running Japanese language schools in Tokyo, Osaka, and Saga.
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