Blockchain for online Service Security

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Virtual currencies like Bitcoin have demonstrated the huge potential of blockchain digital ledger technology, but blockchain could also revolutionize the delivery of secure online services. However, the broad landscape of blockchain variants, blockchain’s inherent complexity and the difficulties associated with implementing it are significant barriers to adoption. The BoSS project seeks to simplify the creation of legally-compliant, blockchain-secured applications that maintain confidentiality and privacy. To do so, the consortium will develop frameworks for technology selection, supporting middleware, and regulatory compliance.

Integrity without the need for a central authority

Traditional business transactions are based on trust, usually involving central authorities such as banks, clearing houses and governments to verify their legitimacy. Distributed ledgers such as blockchain are shared databases that support secure, transparent transactions without the need for a trusted authority. All organizations in a blockchain network have identical copies of the database, whose integrity and accuracy is cryptographically ensured. While blockchain has obvious disruptive potential in currency, many other applications could be impacted as well, including commerce, legal transactions, contract management and more.

Real-world blockchain applications in the cloud

In cooperation with five industry partners, BoSS will focus on five application cases: online contracts, domain registration, patient file management among hospitals, enhanced data sharing, and decentralized (meal) vouchers. As industry partners lack the infrastructure to support full copies of the distributed blockchain ledgers, cases above require blockchain-as-a-service platforms that could be offered by third-party infrastructure and cloud providers.

More transparent, simpler to develop and legally-compliant

The BoSS project has outlined three innovation goals:

  1. To enable secure application development in blockchain-based systems, supporting smart contract management and privacy-aware transactions and verification;
  2. To create blockchain middleware platforms that improve blockchain-based system architecture and support the assessment, comparison and secure implementation of blockchain technologies;
  3. To define a legal approach supporting the long-term validity of blockchain-based transactions and the feasibility of privacy-aware business ecosystems based on blockchain.

Fostering trust, reducing dependency on outside parties

The outcomes of the BoSS project will help industry partners to use blockchain technology to gain the trust of their customers by reducing their reliance on third-party services and centralized authorities. The results will also provide the foundations for the development of blockchain-as-a-service platforms and specific industry collaboration projects.

“The BoSS project seeks to simplify the creation of legally-compliant, blockchain-based applications that maintain confidentiality and privacy, with the goal of increasing the blockchain-related knowledge base and reducing industry reliance on central authorities.”


Blockchain for online Service Security.

BoSS is an imec.icon project funded by Agentschap Innoveren & Ondernemen, innoviris and imec.

It started on 01.10.2017 and is set to run until 30.09.2019.

Project information


  • UP-nxt
  • Noesis Solutions
  • EURid
  • Thanksys
  • Proximus


  • imec – DistriNet - KU Leuven
  • imec – COSIC – KU Leuven
  • KU Leuven - CiTiP


  • Project lead: Koen Handekyn
  • Research lead: Wouter Joosen
  • Proposal Manager: Bert Lagaisse
  • Innovation manager: Steven Van Assche