Banco Sabadell, Banco Santander, Bankia, BBVA, and CaixaBank have deployed a smart contracts test platform built on blockchain that enables interbank payments between the partners. While this article provides no details regarding the smart contract implementation, this aspect is the most likely source of risk.
The trend, starting with Ethereum, has been to utilize a Turing complete development language which has no restrictions on what can be programmed other than costs associated with resources consumed. This, in turn, makes validation that the contract will execute as expected extremely difficult or even impossible. A better solution would use a restricted language, possibly one linked to a modelling system that can validate both the actions that will be taken, action triggers, and completeness or a special language that exposes only those contractual terms required:
Banco Sabadell, Banco Santander, Bankia, BBVA and CaixaBank have initiated a proof-of-concept test to deploy an interbank Smart Payments Platform that would enable the execution of payments in blockchain networks.
The initiative, coordinated by Iberpay, the company that manages the Spanish Payment System (SNCE), aims to facilitate the initiation of instant credit transfers from smart contracts deployed in a blockchain network.
Iberpay says that any kind of business case developed with the technology could execute and programme automatic payments – from the signing of a contract to the delivery of goods.
Overview by Tim Sloane, VP, Payments Innovation at Mercator Advisory Group