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[DigitalToday] zkrypt Wins CES Best Innovation Award for Second Year in a Row for Blockchain Voting System

DigitalToday  2023-12-27

Korean companies to show off AI-powered tech at CES 2024 next month



zkrypto wins Best Innovation at CES for second year in a row for blockchain voting system




zkrypto (CEO Hyun-ok Oh), which won two Best Innovation Awards at CES 2023 this year, is receiving attention for winning the Best Innovation Award at CES 2024 next year. zkrypto's win is significant because it is the first time a blockchain company has won the Best Innovation Award at CES for two consecutive years, and it is rare for a startup to win the award for two consecutive years.


The product that zkrypto will be honoured for at CES 2024 is zkVoting (Poll Station). zkVoting, which stands for poll station, is a system that combines blockchain and zero-knowledge proof technology with real-world offline elections that are currently taking place around the world.


zkVoting is an enhancement of blockchain and zero-knowledge proof technology that can be used in actual offline elections currently taking place around the world.


While zKVoting, which won the Best Innovation Award at CES 2023 earlier this year, is aimed at online voting, the zkVoting Pole Station, which will be awarded at CES 2024 next year, is a solution that can also be applied to offline elections. For example, it could be used in the election of a member of parliament or the presidential election in Korea.


"The reason why we won the Best Innovation Award at CES for the second year in a row is because of the social importance of voting," said Hyunok Oh, CEO of zkrypto. "With the zkVoting Pole Station, voters can confirm that their votes have been cast according to their intentions, and the post-election results can be publicly verified, overcoming the limitations of the existing polling station system."


Oh explained that zkVoting Pole Station compensates for the shortcomings of the current voting system by using blockchain technology and encryption technology called zero-knowledge proof for offline voting, a service that voters currently encounter when they go to a polling station and vote in person.


"With zkVoting Pole Station, voters can confirm that their votes were cast according to their intentions, and the post-election tally can be publicly verified, overcoming the limitations of the existing polling station system," said Hyunok Oh, CEO of zkrypto.

Oh attributes the rise in popularity of the zkVoting pole station to the fact that there have been a number of recent incidents around the world where voting results have been disputed, leading to social disruption. For example, in the Brazilian presidential election earlier this year, people who disagreed with the outcome occupied the presidential palace.


Such incidents are likely to become more frequent in the future, and in order to minimise these social costs, it is essential to have a reliable voting system, which is why zkVoting Pole Station is gaining attention, Oh said.


zkVoting Pole Stations are the same as the way voters currently vote at polling stations. Voters cast their votes on electronic devices instead of paper, and the results are encrypted and stored on the blockchain.


The challenge is to ensure that voters can verify that they voted as they intended, while allowing for both secret and public verification. zkVoting provides a separate verification device that can check the content stored in the blockchain to ensure that the voter has voted as intended. If you don't trust this device, you can also check the voting results using your mobile phone only at the voting site, essentially ensuring both secret voting and reliability, according to zkrypto.


"Zero-knowledge proof technology itself has been developed a lot in recent years, and several places, including zkrypto, are trying various applications," said Oh, explaining that it is the latest advanced technology that is difficult to be tried by hand in the world.


zkrypto is a company that develops privacy-preserving applications by applying a cryptographic technology called "Zero-Knowledge Proof" to the blockchain. There are only about five companies in the United States, Europe, and Israel that have the original technology in the field of zero-knowledge proof, and zkrypto is the only one in Asia. It is thanks to this technology that it has been selected as a '2022 Entrepreneurship Centre University' hosted by Hanyang University's Entrepreneurship Support Group and supported by the Ministry of SMEs and Startups and the Korea Startup Promotion Agency.


"It's very difficult for people to make sure that their votes are reflected in the counting, and this can be ensured through zkrypto technology, so we expect it to receive a lot of attention because it can minimise social costs," said Oh.



He's excited about the idea because it can be adapted to any country's current voting system. The zkVoting Pole Station can be used in very important elections. For example, in the general election next year, or in the upcoming presidential and local elections, if there is a consensus among the members of the society, they can be replaced by zkVoting pole stations. In particular, the market is expected to expand further as the system can solve the problem of voting distrust, which is equally experienced by people not only in Korea but around the world, Oh said.


Oh aims to commercialise zkVoting and zkVoting Pole Station technology in earnest next year, when CES 2024 is held. Next year, he plans to enter the overseas blockchain voting service market in earnest.


"This year, we made it a year to build a reference with zkVoting, which won the Best Innovation Award at CES 2023," he said. "We are working with the National Election Commission to apply and test zkVoting to the online voting system of the National Election Commission."


"As for the commercialisation of the technology, we are preparing for domestic and international companies or national governments," said Oh. "Especially in 2025, we are planning to increase the scale and make zkrypto's voting technology available everywhere in the world."


Source: DigitalToday (DigitalToday)(http://www.digitaltoday.co.kr)

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