Privacy Is Key To Blockchain, According To Former Chase Exec

Amber Baldet, the former head of JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s blockchain program, believes that companies need to make privacy a priority as they develop more blockchain applications.

“We should be focusing on creating a privacy-preserving system that gives us the option to create something that might be disruptive,” Baldet said at the MIT Technology Review’s Business of Blockchain conference, according to Bloomberg.

But today, blockchain doesn’t allow users to own data, selectively disclose it and get paid for it, she added.

Baldet, who worked at JPMorgan for six years and helped set the company’s blockchain strategy, said that figuring out the privacy issue will be a crucial component to blockchain adoption across corporations.

At the presentation, Baldet spoke about zero-knowledge cryptography, which allows one party to verify specific data without the other party having to disclose additional information. For example, a car dealer can find out whether a customer earns more than a certain level, but won’t be privy to the person’s exact salary.

“Something enterprise learned early was that keeping the secret sauce of your business logic private is very important,” Baldet said.

Earlier this month, JPMorgan announced that Baldet was leaving the company. During her time at the bank, she led product development of Quorum, a type of blockchain.

When it was reported that the bank was considering spinning off Quorum after deciding the efforts would be better off in the home of an independent business, reports surfaced that Baldet would most likely leave the company or decide to create her own blockchain project for the financial services industry.

She did not reveal her next move at the MIT conference.

Baldet was replaced by Christine Moy, a senior product manager in the Blockchain Center of Excellence who had been leading blockchain product development for the bank’s investor services and capital markets business.



Banks, corporates and even regulators now recognize the imperative to modernize — not just digitize —the infrastructures and workflows that move money and data between businesses domestically and cross-border.

Together with Visa, PYMNTS invites you to a month-long series of livestreamed programs on these issues as they reshape B2B payments. Masters of modernization share insights and answer questions during a mix of intimate fireside chats and vibrant virtual roundtables.