Chainlink Declares Acquisition of Cornell University’s Blockchain Oracle DECO

With Chainlink acquiring DECO, the privacy-preserving oracle protocol, it aims to improve confidentiality and privacy in the DeFi space.

By · Aug 31, 2020 . 5min read

Chainlink DECO

Chainlink, the most widely used decentralized financial data oracle, announced today that it had acquired DECO from Cornell University. Ari Juel developed DECO. He is the former chief scientist at RSA, a digital security company. Additionally, Juel will also join Chainlink as part of the deal and is already working on creating Chainlink’s new whitepaper with the company’s CEO, Sergey Nazarov. The latter also reckoned that the utilization of DECO would be as a foundation for crypto wish list items, like decentralized identification, permissionless credit, etc.

DECO essentially makes Chainlink, a decentralized oracle network that lets smart contracts use data from external sources, more private. With DECO, smart contracts can prove the origin and state of confidential information transmitted through an oracle, without forcing users to give up their data.

How does Chainlink’s DECO Operate?

Chainlink’s new oracle solution operates by porting data from off-chain locations to the blockchain itself. To do so, it utilizes smart contracts. Additionally, to ensure safe web practices, it leverages how information is transmitted. DECO’s website states that the product can be beneficial for users who want to monetize data, but not wish to give away anything except for data sale.

As mentioned, DECO’s usage can be for identification purposes. Additionally, it can prove that a person is over 18 years old without unveiling their birth date. While this is a simple instance of what the oracle can allow, it does have broad implications. For instance, the same principle can be appended to DeFi for allowing permissionless credit systems.

According to Nazarov, DECO could even enable smart contracts to request and receive off-chain credit data, like banking records. Nevertheless, in doing so, it will not have to collect any of the individual’s data. Thus it won’t violate their privacy in any way. Nazarov concluded by saying that it can also develop “endless possibilities” in the DeFi space.

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