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Chainlink privacy oracle of Cornell university

Photo of: Janeth Diamond
by Janeth Diamond

The amount of the acquisition is still unclear, but it has been established that Chainlink has acquired a blockchain oracle solution DECO from the noted Cornell university. Chainlink acquiring DECO is its second acquisition made by the firm to date, the first one being Town Crier a leading hardware-based oracle system acquired by Chainlink in November 2018.

The announcement that came a few hours ago could be a big game-changer for the cryptocurrency industry. 

The solution, DECO was originally created by Ari Juel who was a former chief scientist at a digital security firm called RSA. DECO will also collaborate with Chainlink Labs as a part of the terms of the deal. From what has come to be known, Juel will also join Chainlink as a part of the deal and are already working on the creation of Chainlink’s new whitepaper with the company’s CEO Sergey Nazarov. Both of them go back to 2017 when they co-authored the original Chainlink white paper. 

The new oracle solutions work by porting data from off-chain locations to the blockchain. It makes use of smart contracts with its leverage on information transmission for secure web practices. The official website of DECO shows that this solution can be useful for users who want to monetize data but do not want to give anything else except for the data given for sale. According to one of the releases from the firm, the solution leverages how HTTPS/TLS information is transmitted that paves the way for more secure and benchmarked web practices.

DECO can be used for identification purposes and it can also identify whether the person is over 18 years or not without revealing their birth date. This is just one of the examples of what the oracle can allow but it might have large-scale implications. DECO can also allow smart contracts to receive off-chain credit information like banking records. 

Nazarov said that DECO can be used as a foundation for a few crypto wish listings such as decentralized identification or permissionless credit. An oracle like DECO could one day allow a smart contract to query off-chain credit information such as banking records without overdoing the personal information. 

Nazarov said, “DECO is the way a lot of collateral will make its way to DeFi.”

Juels said that the said privacy is possible because of DECO’s incorporation of zero-knowledge protocols which has been popularised by privacy coin zcash in the cryptocurrency sphere.

Chainlink has also been associating itself with other industries like its recent announcement of providing decentralized weather data to insurance start-up Arbol. Arbol provides crop insurance for small and medium-sized farmers and enterprises. Smart contracts will be used to pay claim to subscribers when any preset value for instance the average monthly temperature or rainfall will be different from what the contract specifies. 

The amount of the acquisition has been kept under covers which could come out in the open once the deal is through.