Brisbane AU, bit-chikun CEO Derren Desouza (known online as derrend) has announced that cryptoproof.info, a webside that uses Bitcoin addresses as serial numbers to detect counterfeit objects in the real world, is now available for beta testing.
Cryptoproof.info allows consumers to verify if a given Bitcoin address belongs to a particular individual or company by utilising Bitcoin subkey addresses derived from BIP32 extended public keys which have been submitted by people/companies who have registered with the site.
Example taken from announcement thread on bitcointalk.org:
In the future when you order an item from a vendor such as a cup or a toy for example it seems sensible to envision a scenario where rather than have the vendor mail it to you or send it by drone they instead send the blueprint to your 3D printer which produces the item instantly for you at home or maybe they print the item for you themselves and then physically send it but in either case how can you know that you purchased the item from the producer in question and not someone who ordered an item themselves, intercepted the blueprint or scanned the product which was delivered to them and just sold you a clone? (this is a huge problem in the pharmaceutical industry)
Cryptoproof.info solves this by providing a point of reference where vendors can register master cryptographic keys and then brand each item with a unique subkey address which cryptoproof.info can verify so that the consumer can know if the product originates from the producer that they think it does (by seeing if a verified account is associated with it) and if there is more than one copy of that item in existence (by seeing if/how many times that address has been submitted in the past).
Using Bitcoin addresses for this purpose adds an extra dimension to the scenario because, for instance, value can be transmitted to and from it which allows not only for verification but also can be used to keep an immutable record showing how much was paid for the item, who paid it and when the transaction took place.
“Google indexes the worlds web pages, we will index it’s objects.” – derrend