Appetite for Blockchain Tech Builds Among Korean Banks, but Without Crypto

In recent weeks, major South Korean financial institutions have rolled out a number of services incorporating blockchain technology, especially in the areas of Know Your Customer (KYC) procedures and security. Fintech has become a buzzword for local banks trying to keep up with the change of the times.

The banks, however, are not looking into an important part of blockchain, which is digital assets, says one influential Korean advocate of alternative currency. In order to assess the Korean blockchain space, it is important to understand how the trend affects existing players and the cryptocurrency market.

Blockchain as a ledger

Shinhan Bank, the first bank to be established on the peninsula, incorporated blockchain into its lending services on May 27.

The bank’s “Blockchain Verification System” allows users to receive evidential documents on private enterprises. Through this system, it has shortened the process from two to three days to almost instant verification.

KB Kookmin Bank, one of the largest banks in the country, signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with blockchain firm Atomrigs Lab, as Cointelegraph reported June 11. The partnership is designed to explore digital asset management and protection solutions.

What differentiates Atomrigs Labs from other blockchain developers is that it specializes in the financial sector and is known to have the technology to retrieve private keys in case of loss.

The latest move is part of KB Kookmin’s strategic blueprint to make the promotion of digital transformation a priority. Last year, the bank announced it will focus on technological improvements using the acronym “ABCDE” — standing for artificial intelligence, blockchain, cloud, data and ecosystem.

KB Kookmin has also signed an MoU with LG Corp., and is currently developing a joint product currently being called Magok Pay. The nickname comes from where the LG Science Park is located in Seoul.

The payment system using LG CNS’ technology, the IT…

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