South Korea’s Jeju Island to use blockchain to combat spread of COVID-19

South Korean blockchain technology company ICONLOOP has announced that Jeju Island, the country’s most popular domestic tourist destination, will use its Decentralised Identity (DID) blockchain technology to provide private and secure COVID-19 contact tracing to the island’s visitors.

Jeju Island receives more than 15 million annual visitors, who will able have access to ICONLOOP’s contact tracing technology.

The Jeju Special Self-Governing Province have signed a cooperation agreement to introduce this innovative COVID-19 and infectious disease prevention system, with visitors being recommended to use a mobile app to check in to tourist destinations on businesses on the island.

“This cooperation with Jeju Island is opening new possibilities for real-life application of blockchain DID authentication in the post-COVID-19 era,” said Jong-hyup Kim, CEO of ICONLOOP. “As more users directly experience safe and convenient DID service at scale, we will realise many more new ways that blockchain technology can be applied to their daily lives.”

Tae-bong Lim, Director of Health and Welfare of Jeju Self-Governing Province, added: “Through this new infectious disease prevention system, Jeju Island will be able to be reborn as a safe and representative tourist destination in Korea.

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“We look forward to revitalising the local economy, which has been stagnant due to the prolonged COVID-19 pandemic.”

The contact tracing system is serviced through ICONLOOP’s DID authentication mobile app service called Zzeung, which protects the privacy of all users. Zzeung was designated as an innovative financial service (“MyID”) by Korea’s Financial Services Commission in recognition of its high convenience and security.

The app uses blockchain technology to store data and notify visitors if they have come into contact with someone that has COVID-19.

A key feature of the app is user convenience. Scanning a QR code is a familiar, fast check-in process for many people, especially in South Korea, and is cost-effective for business owners. Business owners do not need to collect and handle any personal information, which also frees them from any legal risk.

Beginning in September, this new contact tracing system will be officially operated to private businesses in the 8 districts of Jeju Island.

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