The Ministry of Education is setting up a new consortium. Specifically, the consortium will be developing a system based on blockchain technology to verify degrees issued by Malaysian universities.
The creation of the consortium was spurred by the many reports of fake degrees claimed to be awarded to paying customers. In fairness, the idea is not something new; the original concept was created in 2018 by MADICT (Council of IT Decans).
Members of the consortium include public universities such as IIUM, UTM, UITM, UMS, UUM, and UMT. No private universities are in the consortium, but the MOE is working to include more universities in the consortium soon. The first batch of certificates using the blockchain-based technology is set to graduate this month from the IIUM Ph.D. programme.
Ministry of Education announces setting up of a University Consortium on Blockchain Technology and Launches the E-Scroll system – A University Degree Issuance and Verification System Based on the a BlockChain technology. pic.twitter.com/Q4y4sGnv9k
— Kementerian Pengajian Tinggi (@MOHEOfficial) November 9, 2018
It should also be noted that a system is already in place, created by the team headed by Prof Dato Dr. Norbik Bashah Idris from the International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM). Using NEM blockchain, users can authenticate the validity of a degree by scanning a QR code printed on a university certificate.
While the verification system can help curb the number of fake degrees in circulation, it’s hard to think that this just sounds like another system that was created to ride along the blockchain wave.