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Blockchain Tech Used to Prevent Property Fraud in Africa

Rebecca Campbell on 25/01/2017


A new startup company in Africa is hoping to stop property fraud with the use of the blockchain technology in emerging markets.


Based in Ghana, BenBen is a digital land registry that allows users to quickly search for land information and perform property transactions. By integrating with BenBen, governments can make their land information quickly searchable for people where they can digitally receive land transactions such as mortgages. This then makes it easier for financial institutions to provide lending to these properties, which is an issue that many people in Ghana face.


According to BenBen, they ‘believe that secure land information with fast and easy transactions will facilitate the property investment, increase government efficiency, and access to funding, and we are committed to providing it.’


Along with providing a solution to the property sector, BenBen aims to deliver it within the agriculture, forestry, mining, and other industries too with the use of blockchain technology.


In a report from Cambridge News, BenBen, which has been accepted on the Cambridge Social Ventures incubation programme at Judge Business School, is hoping to empower its citizens so that they can gain access to land rights risk-free.


Phillip Jarman, BenBen’s head of strategy and business development, said to Cambridge News that when a person purchases a property it can take as long as two years to register it because it’s done through a paper-based system.


He said:


   In that time someone else can come forward and claim that they owned the property in the first place.


Through the use of BenBen, though, it cuts out the unnecessary waiting time that allows fraudsters to make a move. With the platform up and running it has listed 40,000 properties in Accra, the Ghanaian capital, and has secured Barclays Ghana as its first customer.

Securing Property with Blockchain


When it comes to the property sector many countries are realizing the benefits that the blockchain can provide, which is why many are using the technology to conduct property transfers.


In July of last year, Ubitquity, the blockchain-powered real estate, became the first to undertake a real estate property ownership transfer using the technology.


Cook County in Illinois also took the leap in October by conveying properties on the blockchain to provide better information on empty buildings in Chicago.


Whereas the country of Georgia announced earlier this month that it was set to introduce and implement a blockchain platform that would enable citizens to receive information about real estate digitally from documents stored on the blockchain.


These, however, are just a few cases of blockchain being implemented within the property sector.


It does, though, demonstrate the impact the technology is having and how it can better improve the property industry within many countries.

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