Blockchain. It’s not just for banks anymore. In a move that helps cement B2B payments within the realm of secure transactions, PayStand, a B2B payment and billing company, has given firms the ability to notarize and also certify payments across the supply chain.
The firm noted last month upon launching the service that payments recording and certification have been the purview of physical, manual processes — that is, signoffs via notaries or auditors.
In an interview with PYMNTS, Jeremy Almond, cofounder and CEO of PayStand, said: “The general idea behind using blockchain is that most payment history [and tracking] is not as secure as it could be.” Most recordkeeping, he said, remains tied to paper and email. “This is a laborious process,” he said.
And with such manual activities in place, there is always room for fraud (which the firm has estimated can cost the trade finance industry as much as $4 trillion annually), and thus, there is a real need for payments to be not just secure, the executive said, but also verifiable in a way that is, essentially, irrefutable.
As has been well-documented, blockchain allows for a decentralized way to verify payments and, via encryption, allows data to flow only between the parties involved. Almond told PYMNTS the immutable nature of the payments tracking proves especially useful in supply chain payments, and especially across logistics, with goods being shipped across far-flung locales. Information parlayed across the blockchain can never be changed.
The certification process, said Almond, offers receipts to companies on each side of the transaction. In addition, the firm has noted, no information is actually stored on the blockchain; rather, the audit trail alone resides there — in what Almond said is a continuum that “certifies, verifies and does not store.”