True, the service is something of a proof-of-concept for a mission that Factom has to “Factomize Everything” — or at least all of the world’s data — but it points to a tangible use case for blockchains as data “oracles” for financial applications. Data provenance — tracking how and when data is created and processed and potentially changed — is emerging as a key topic for Chief Data Officers as regulators increase scrutiny on the nuts and bolts of trading operations.
Not content with providing U.S. price data, Factom is also making Chinese stock prices available via a collaboration with DataYes. Factom’s service uses an overlay network of servers to store the actual price data, which is periodically anchored to the bitcoin blockchain via a merkle tree of hashes. That technique allows Factom to secure masses amount of data on the notoriously non-scalable blockchain. Think big data meets blockchain.