Various companies across the globe are looking for ways to implement blockchain technology. In this regard, Mastercard has recently been awarded a patent which will bring distributed ledgers to the coupon industry.
Mastercard and Blockchain
Even though Mastercard may not like Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, the company acknowledges the potential of blockchain. This technology underpins the framework for most digital assets today and can be used for a vast number of other use cases as well. Companies in any segment of the financial industry have been looking for ways to incorporate blockchain in one way or another.
Now that Mastercard has received a new patent involving DLT, an interesting situation has been developing behind the scenes. According to the filing, the company will use blockchain to thwart coupon fraud via a new DLT-based application that is designed to authenticate the veracity of vouchers and coupons in real-time. Additionally, it will also allow the credit card issuer to offer discounts to consumers directly.
The Nitty-Gritty of the Matter
Everyone who makes use of this new protocol will receive their own unique ID on the proprietary blockchain. The personal information assigned with this ID will be kept private at all times and every time a user redeems a coupon, the ledger will verify its authenticity and applicability.
If a coupon is valid, the discount or incentive will be granted automatically and in real-time.
All redeemed coupons will immediately be sent to an address that no one can access. This process is known as “burning”, a concept used by various companies and service providers in today’s crypto-ecosystem. By taking this measure, Mastercard effectively avoids duplication of existing coupons completely.
It is not the first time a payment giant is looking at blockchain technology for managing discounts or loyalty programs. American Express has made its intentions clear to pursue a similar venture and as per industry experts, it seems as if the new AmEx platform will be built on top of the Hyperledger blockchain.
All of this goes to show that there are many different ways in which blockchain technology can make its inroads into the financial sector. Mastercard is taking a somewhat different approach in this regard, although it is doubtful they are the only ones trying to end coupon fraud through innovative technological breakthroughs.
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