BRIDGETOWN, Barbados — In a move aimed at boosting security and portability of official examinations records, the Caribbean Examinations Council (CXC) will pilot Blockcerts or blockchain-based credentials to a limited number of candidates starting on Wednesday, October 31, 2018.
During the Blockcerts pilot, some 24,000 candidates who sat the 2018 May/June examinations and for whom CXC has e-mail addresses, will receive credentials to access their e-certificates. The candidates will also receive the traditional paper-based certificate.
The Blockcerts will be issued using the Learning Machine Federated Issuing System, an enterprise platform for nation-states and multinational organisations looking to securely digitise the issuance and verification of official records.
“CXC is extremely excited about this latest development as we transition several of our processes to electronic workflows,” stated CXC registrar, Glenroy Cumberbatch. “Our candidates as well as users of the certificates, that is, employers, colleges and universities will find Blockcerts very convenient to use.”
The registrar added that, as an examination board, security of the certificates is a CXC priority and the blockchain technology provides the most robust protection available.
With the shift to Blockcerts, candidates will receive their certificates via the free, open source Blockcerts Wallet, a highly secure credentials wallet that stores, shares, and verifies evidence of candidates’ achievement in CXC examinations.
Issuing documents as Blockcerts helps to prevent the loss of official records in the event of relocation, natural disasters such as hurricanes, floods, earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, all hazards that affect the Caribbean periodically. In addition, there are no fees for current and future candidates to receive their e-certificates, and for users of Blockcerts to authenticate a candidate’s record.
Blockcerts was selected because it offers several advantages: preserves vendor independence for records issuance, sharing, storage, and verification, and is it is the most widely-adopted global open standard for blockchain credentials.
Natalie Smolenski, Learning Machine vice president of business development, said, “It is institutions like the CXC that are advancing the cause of individual ownership of their official records. Students and workers travel frequently to live, study, and work throughout the Caribbean. Having easily shareable, portable electronic credentials can speed up a verification process that usually takes weeks or months into a matter of seconds. This is a win/win for both issuing institutions and Caribbean citizens.”