Over the past month, developers have successfully leveraged blockchain technology to create automated “smart contract” services. Now, some are looking to tackle the next big practical blockchain application: sovereign identity solutions, which aim to harness blockchain technology to create easy-to-access immutable records of personally identifiable information needed to gain access to services like health care.

Before such solutions can take off, they have to overcome two distinct challenges: making them easy for people to actually use, and handling and storing sensitive information in compliance with a variety of data protection laws. Some government officials and software developers, however, are expressing confidence that there are ways to design platforms to overcome both roadblocks.

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