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Payments Group Discover Joins Blockchain Research Effort

Discover Financial Services blockchain development Chamber of Digital Commerce

Global payments company Discover Financial Services has become the latest significant financial firm to commit to blockchain development, following a decision today to join the Chamber of Digital Commerce in its blockchain advocacy mission.

Discover will join the executive committee of the Chamber of Digital Commerce as a full member, and will support “the chamber’s efforts to educate, promote and accelerate the adoption of blockchain technologies worldwide.”

The president of the Chamber of Digital Commerce, Perianne Boring, said the news was confirmation of the blockchain industry coming of age.

“(The decision) is really a sign of the maturation of the blockchain industry, in that one of the largest companies is getting involved and I think it’s a positive sign.”

Discover will work specifically at the interface of blockchain and government, an area which remains in flux, with changing global regulatory approaches and attitudes.

According to Boring, the uncertainty around regulation remains the most significant policy issue affecting the development of blockchain technologies and apps.

“With the plethora of regulators from the (U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission) to the (Commodity Futures Trading Commission) to (the Office of Foreign Assets Control), all of these regulatory bodies are taking their approach to the industry and there’s no central point of contact. No one knows who has jurisdiction over what.”

The decision to join the chamber is the latest in a series of positive moves from Discover toward blockchain research and development.

Having worked with the chamber previously, as part of a code-a-thon event among others, Discover has become increasingly bullish on the technology, culminating in the decision this week to formally join the Chamber of Digital Commerce in their research and development efforts.

However, with regulations varying between different countries, and often diverging at state and local government levels, the decision from Discover to join the chamber comes at an important time strategically for the development of the technology.

Boring concluded by suggesting Discover would “strengthen our community,” while saying the decision to join the chamber was “really telling that you have a regulated financial institution getting involved in such a public way.”

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