Israel missing out on blockchain, study finds

Israel is missing out on the potential benefits of blockchain technologies, such as making smart transactions, managing protected databases, and cryptocurrencies that can compete with the conventional monetary system. This conclusion is reached by a new policy document, a draft of which was published for the first time for public comment last week by the Israel Internet Association.

This comprehensive report, containing over 100 pages, is entitled, “Blockchain Technology in Israel: Disruptions, Uses, Challenges, and Obstacles.” It states, “Despite the accelerated technological development and diverse applications of blockchain technology, regulation of the cryptographic space is still in its infancy. Like most countries, Israel has not yet formulated a holistic regulatory infrastructure to support the broad application of this decentralized technology and provide a general solution to the challenges that it presents.”

According to its authors, the report, initiated by the Internet Association in cooperation with the Center for Cyber, Law and Policy (CCLP) at the University of Haifa, was designed “to assess the opportunities and challenges arising from the penetration of blockchain technology into various spheres, to indicate their consequences, and to offer policy recommendations.” Among other things, the report recommends that the Bank of Israel “should reconsider the possibility of making it easier for blockchain ventures to open a bank account.”

Among the participants in the writing of the report, which took a year, were CCLP founding director Niva Elkin-Koren, information security scholar Prof. Orr Dunkelman, Haifa Center for Law and Technology (HCLT) director Prof. Michal Gal, University of Haifa Professors of Law Jonathan Yovel and Orna Rabinovich-Einy, and  Gal Landau-Yaari. head of reserach at the Hogeg Blockchain Research Institute at the Tel Aviv University – Coller School of Management and a CCLP research fellow.

“To streamline database…

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