Blockstack, a New York company that develops platforms for secure, server-less apps using blockchain technology, raised $5.3 million in a round of venture capital funding. According to a report, the funding was provided by Union Square Ventures.
Citing an interview the company gave to The Observer in October, the report said Blockstack, which formerly went by the name Onename, is designing a browser that is powered by blockchain technology. The idea is for users to store all their data, photos, messages, posts and appointments in their own cloud websites. By creating that, a trail of people’s data when they surf online will no longer be accessible by the likes of Facebook and Google unless the consumer wants to give them access to it. The report cited Blockstack Cofounder and CTO Muneeb Ali as saying at TedxNewYork last year: “New internet takes away power from these large companies and takes it to where it always belonged, with the people.”
The report noted that Blockstack initially raised $120,000, and that was followed by $1.33 million in seed funding from SV Angel, AngelList Cofounder Naval Ravikant, investor Shana Fisher and Union Square Ventures, as well as other investors.
While Blockstack aims to prevent Facebook and Google amassing tons of information on consumers, that doesn’t mean both internet companies aren’t eyeing their own blockchain initiatives. According to a report from late August, Apple, Google and others are interested in Ripple and the distributed ledger financial company’s Interledger Protocol. In a report, Ripple said it comes into regular contact with large technology companies that express a lot of interest in its blockchain technology. According to Stefan Thomas, chief technical officer at Ripple, Google, Apple, Mozilla and other large technology companies have been joining forces to find a better user experience for payments on the internet.