ScanTrust's Tim Hadsel-Mares on implementing Blockchain

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As ScanTrust's Tim Hadsel-Mares talks about his background and explores his startup roots, he sounds increasingly like something out of Woody Allen's Match Point. A former regional and national tennis competitor in the United States, Tim retired to being a professional tennis instructor at Topnotch Resort and Spa in Stowe, Vermont. "It was a legitimate profession, made money and everything!" he laughs. "I started teaching at resorts during the summertime, but it only made my real game deteriorate." 

He then settled in Thailand after a six-month exchange at the American Chamber of Commerce, taking time to build up his portfolio of contacts in the advertising and consulting industry, eventually working his way up to being Regional Director of the internet of packaging startup, ScanTrust. Best known for their anti-counterfeiting and supply chain expertise, ScanTrust is able to use gather, monitor, and analyse vast amounts of data from any source, be it QR code, RFID chips or hidden NFCs. 

Of late, Tim has been lending his time and expertise to ScanTrust's new project with Hyperledger, a Linux Foundation Project that is an open source collaborative effort created to advance cross-industry blockchain technologies in industries such as finance, banking, IoT, supply chain, manufacturing and technology.

"I've always been very interested in the IoT and interconnectedness things." Tim goes on, "We are now working in a software-enabled, agile environment with IoT and tech revolutionising the world. The cross-over between physical products and machine-learning is fascinating, and I'd rather be on the forefront of this revolution instead of at the back." 

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WHAT IS HYPERLEDGER

Think of it as an open-source operating system for marketplaces, data-sharing networks, micro-currencies, and decentralised digital communities. It has the potential to vastly reduce the cost and complexity of getting things done in the real world. ScanTrust is looking forward to collaborate with the Hyperledger community to develop a scalable, enterprise-grade blockchain framework.

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IMPLEMENTING BLOCKCHAIN

ScanTrust's secure digital identifiers connect physical goods to the internet for enhanced supply chain security; by adding open blockchain technology to this foundation, brands will be able to protect and track their products using mobile phone authentication. Blockchain is an exciting technology that, if implemented correctly, allows companies to increase trust in their brands and engage with their consumers by collaborating with upstream and downstream trading partners to provide transparency into the production and distribution of products. Here's how ScanTrust can help both brands and consumers in building brand loyalty and trust.

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SCANTRUST

There are certain markets, like China, India and Myanmar, that are more prone to counterfeiting. The growth in counterfeiting remains a problem, and scandals can be highly publicised. Naturally, counterfeiting is particularly dangerous in today's e-commerce society because you are purchasing something based on a picture, and have no access to the tangible product that you can touch, gauge and assess.  Being a connected consumer in our world today is about to become a huge concern for brands, because more and more people will get used to having brand accountability and transparency in their lives. The moment transparency is not present in a brand, people will immediately notice and this phenomenon will become a huge liability for brands. This is where ScanTrust comes in to ensure the authenticity of the items. 

Expertly aiding brands in identifying counterfeit items, ScanTrust utilises patent-protected technology to produce a unique, secure QR code for various products. They then manage the lifecycle of these QR codes, ensuring that counterfeit items are closely monitored and deactivated through these codes. "As counterfeit items are usually replicas of an original, our system uses algorithms to detect suspicious behaviour," Tim elaborates. "ScanTrust has the information on the exact destination of the product - but if another is scanned in a separate destination, we can flag this suspicious behaviour and turn off these codes and alert the brands and local authorities for closer inspection."

Shu Zhen Seet