NEM Apostille - A NEM Notary System - Community Fund Proposal

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NEM Apostille – A Blockchain Based Notary, Proof-of-Existence, and Auditing Service

Community Funding
This project is being proposed to be funded with 5 million XEM from the Community Fund, to pay for bounties to the engineers/designers, operation costs of maintaining servers, as well as other expenses that might arise during a one year time period. At this point it is an open-source project with code released for the NEM community and 3rd party developers benefits. It is currently being designed and planned as a non-profit venture.

Team Members
Jeff – Project Manager and Designer
Rev – Web Service Engineer
QM – Wallet Service Engineer

To build a Factom/PoE like service on top of NEM that can 1) prove that a certain version of a digitized file existed at a certain time, and 2) that follows the process development and evolution of that document, and 3) serves as a method for auditing the history of said documents.

Possible Use Cases of NEM Apostille
Securing time stamps and fingerprints of important documents to prove that a certain version of those documents existed at a certain time, making back dating and editing impossible. This has a wide possibility of uses including asset exchanges of all kinds, security applications, patents, record systems, publishing, and more.

What does he name “NEM Apostille” mean?
The idea of an apostille was popularized during the Hague Convention as a notary stamp for international certifications. The convention has 110 nations participating. NEM Apostille takes the concept to the next level with making a notary system that anybody can use anywhere for any type of document not based on political authorities but on math and science.

User Experience for Web Service Free Version
A user can register an account on a web portal.

Once a user has made a user profile they can then upload a digital file; that file is hashed making a fingerprint of the document, the hash is then signed and then included in the blockchain. This transaction acts as a NEM Apostille notary.

When submitting the document during the hashing process they can choose to tag the document with a metadata name. A new account is generated for each of these metadata tags. A tag is just simply generating a new account and naming it with a label, not very different than what NEM does when a new account is created in NCC and labeled. (But this might need to be in a different location, not the address book file. More like an Apostille address/tag book that is separate from the normal address book. Same structure, but a different place.) We are proposing that account labels/tags are only known locally. This in theory is used to track the progress of that document over time. So each new updated version of that document will have that specific tag/label/account the hash is sent to. The receiving account will basically be logging a history of hashes that represents the file changing over time. When typing in a tag for an account, a suggest list of previously used tags by that person will auto-suggest.

A separate log history is made that logs the file’s name as it was uploaded, the hash of the document, and all the transaction details for its posting on the chain, as well as with the receiver address and the tag it represents.

A proposed email or log history entry would look like this the following:

File Name: Jabo38 cool solar panel project.txt
File Hash: 6c4520d2e4b41267b2be9ad129117058af9578b0a7e912ab5… (these hashes are truncated in this proposal for reader’s ease.)
Hash Signature: ntya:a0f6884f41d5ac6f019ac10402143b7cab8acc32795efa29e96d4a…
Receiving Account: nbzmqo-7zpbyn-bdur7f-75maka-2s3dhd-cifg77-5n3d
Receiving Account Tag: Solar Panel Poject 2016
Transaction Hash: 96dbd555a2a15b0cfdb960b1b3384f4d5a1e2ce1672dc5abc7fcb41917552881
Transaction Time Stamp: 2016-03-19 08:21:16

Later on, they might update this file and want to save a hash of a new version. Said transaction might look like this.

File Name: jabo38 cool solar panel project version b 3/29.txt
File Hash: 7530477efe6a35c79ccdfa5daff5d8bcbfe49845b2917b10b8748…
Hash Signature: ntya:d9fb77fa5edbee5e2d3f40728361dbbaa3d639002726ec3d1ece2d23c…
Receiving Account: nbzmqo-7zpbyn-bdur7f-75maka-2s3dhd-cifg77-5n3d
Receiving Account Tag: Solar Panel Poject 2016
Transaction Hash: 24f0db5400585339705aa8ac929774bf6b7330810c03bc2a0ca4038ac41aacff
Transaction Time Stamp: 2016-03-29 09:27:45

And now the file can be seen to be changing over time.

For this free non-profit version, a person will get so many free notaries to the chain (possibly 5-20 depending on funding; funding that will be sought outside of the realm of this proposal.). After they use those free notaries, then instead of automatically making a notary in the chain for them, the website instead gives them a QR which they then scan from their mobile app. All information needed is preloaded, they then only need scan and press send. (They could also be given info to manually copy and paste if they didn’t have a mobile app).

Additional Option Being Considered: It might be possible that the person wants a copy of the file included in an email receipt, essentially using the email service provider as their cloud storage provider too. If so and in that case, they should be able to check a box. It would be nice for them to have all the files and notary information paired together in a place where they can easily find it.*

Another option might be that when a file is hashed and processed, then the original file and a receipt of the transaction are zipped together and can be downloaded directly.*

Additional Option Being Considered: It would also be interesting if the website had a mobile version so that people could just take a pic of a document or other said item, have it hashed and a compressed version of that pic and receipt sent to their email.*

Additional Option Being Considered: A system of publishing the account label/tags on the blockchain so they can be known not just locally, but also globally.*

*These optional configurations need to be built and tested to see if they are the best option for the platform.

Web Service Mockup

(Audit and History sections of website can draw inspiration from the Lightwallet example below. Actual Apostille website WILL look different. This is only a concept.)

User Experience for Lightwallet Notary System
A fork of the lightwallet will have its own independent and fully functioning notary system.

A person gets a wallet, account, and funds on their own (the NEM faucet can help fund initial tests). Once they have a funded account they can navigate to the Operations Panel. One of the options will be to Create/Review/Audit Notary. Clicking on that takes them to an Apostille Panel. As with the website, they can upload a file, it is hashed, the hash signed, a new account is created that is paired with a new tag or a previously created tagged/account is selected. The hash is sent to that account creating the notary and a log is made in the user’s notary history that logs all the data of file, hash, signature, tag, and transaction.

Lightwallet Mockups

(Actual Apostille service in the wallet WILL look different. This is only a concept.)

Following and Auditing of a File or System of Files User Experience
An account/tag is entered and a file or set of files is uploaded and the two are referenced to find matches between files and blockchain hashes referencing selected documents. A report is given verifying that uploaded document or versions of document existed at a specific point in time.

Additional Option for Web Service and/or Wallet
Possibly the option of uploading a text into a text box might be possible, in which a txt file is created for a person to download and save locally on their computer. The metadata of that file/hash/transaction is possibly made in a second file and the two are zipped together or some other system is made.*

*These optional configurations need to be built and tested to see if they are the best option for the platform.

Critical Criteria for Consideration

Amount Requested: 5 Million XEM is being requested.

Active Members: Active members participating are Rev, QM, and Jabo38, each of which has been involved in many NEM related projects.

Stakes in the Game: This is a non-profit project and will be given freely to the NEM community. The stakes in the game are that Rev, QM, and Jabo38 are already invested in NEM technology and would like to see it grow.

Milestone 1: A working website OR light wallet add-on that is able to hash, tag, and upload said hash to the blockchain. Requested amount 1.5 million XEM. To be finished by the end of May 2016.

Milestone 2: Version 1 Complete. A working website AND light wallet add-on will both be able to hash, tag, sign, and upload that signature to the blockchain. Auditing services and history review is added to both platforms. Requested amount 2 million XEM. To be finished by the end of June 2016.

Milestone 3: A continued development and maintenance of both the webservice and lightwallet with integration of option features, updates, and redesigns based on feedback. Requested amount 1.5 million XEM. To be finished by the end of December 2016.

Project Details and Summary Discussed above, but more details will be given on the forum or to the core team for review upon vote.

Company: This project is an open-source non-profit project and at each milestone payment, code will be posted on Github.

Real Identity: Jabo38 as project manager will be revealing his identity during the project applications process to the Core Team reviewing the proposal.


“Chronicled has not yet chosen the blockchain platform it will use to support the service.”

Why Chronicled Believes Sneakers Could Be Blockchain’s Big Market

Chronicled Raises $3.4 Million to Bring Blockchain Verification to Sneaker Trade

Let them know about the benefits of using the NEM platform.


Thanks. I’ll definitely be interested in doing a demo for them.

We will need a marketer for these things if anybody is interested. There are actually so many potential partnerships.

A Blockchain is really good at certifying small but important data sets. Sneakers is just one among many.

I have a good idea for them.

Any way to prove I’m the one who created the document?

Any way to avoid other people make new versions of my documents?

Both of these things are very important to us and there are different models we are discussing that deal with making it easier or harder to prove who was the one that made the original notary for that document on the NEM system. In the most strict model, only you could verify that you were the one that made the notary, in the most relaxed model, anybody could verify it. So we will be exploring which of these is better or even if both are needed. No decision has been made.

As for other people making new versions of your document. If they have a copy, the can also edit it and start a new notary process, but you will always have the clear claim for having the first notary of that document. If you don’t share the source document, then they can’t edit it.

It is possible that we might have an option that somebody could only fake future versions of the document if they had both the source document and your NEM private key. At which point if they have obtained both of those, there is no way to stop them from making new versions and claim to be you.

NEM gives us lots of options, not only do we have to look at how we can utilize namespaces, but how we can use encrypted versions unencrypted messaging to make data more open or private with both the signatures and/or extra meta data that goes along with the signatures, or possibly even mosaics transferred with a notarization to add an extra layer of validation, and then of course there is multisig too for group validations. So it is not a question of whether we can validate and audit documents and their updates, it is how strict or loose do we want to make the process. I’ve actually over analyzed it until my head hurt but I’ll keep on more. hahaha

That is just with the current version of NEM. With future versions of NEM when we expand types of transactions, it will have even more possible configurations.

I really like the name ! (first thing it reminded me though was apostates so we might wanna get ready for some unexpected jihad)

That doesn’t make sense to me and i think will be really counterintuitive for the user. If people want a lablel for every document they’re gonna end up with 1 account for each document ?

Hmm…that’s a shame. What’s the reaon for that ? No more space in the message field of txs ?
I assume this is what you want to put onto the chain right ? :

does that fit ?
I think I said it before…for apllications like this the message field should be expanded. I think we have the most limited one in all of crypto.

With OCR that could be really cool !

I suggest that fork being merged back in as soon as possible after completion. Right now there are problems to maintain clients. Wait what happens if every service has their own fork. Also being in the maint client is like free advertising for that service. If people have to use a seperate software for it odds are many will never hear about it.

So, how receiving accounts are generated in a higher deterministic manner or randomly and if tags are known or private is still being discussed and explored.

Most of the tests have fit. Just hashing a file with certain algos like SHA1 makes for short hashes, but others can make very long ones. But currently we are using signatures for the final message on chain, so it should be okay. But yes, it would be nice if we had more message space. I’m sure we could find a way to use it for something nice.

What also would be really neat to me is if I was able to send two messages to two accounts in the same transaction. I’ve been playing around with that. (Different use cases for this)

Rev also has a system mostly ready that can chain transactions together, but that is more of a plan B.

Gimre is the core dev in charge of Lightwallet. QM is designing a fork that will have Apostille notarization in it. We are just going at it cowboy style. :slight_smile: I also hope that this can be forked into the main Lightwallet, or just become the main lightwallet but ultimately Gimre will have to consider that and how it fits into the greater plans.

Great initiative !

It’s great to see initiative that aren’t focussed on profit and will be open sourced. This will create opportunities where people will be able to see the true power of NEM !

Love it! This is a well-taught use of the blockchain.

Awesome! Very good use of NEM.

Is the content/data ever revealed for all to see? How will it distinguish between
2 documents with the same name but different content?

Third parties can only see a hash signature on the chain. That hash signature is essentially scrambled data to them.

The contents of a file can’t be known from that hash or the hash signature.

If a person comes into possession of a document, they can upload it, find its hash, and that hash can then be used to verify the message on the chain.

Every different version of a document will have a different hash and different fingerprint so no two versions of a document will be the same.

If you have two versions of a document, you can check to see which one was notarized first and if from different senders from which sender was first.

Hello NEM community!
I am a representative of Project Radon and someone posted this thread in our Slack earlier. I wanted to contact you all and invite you to check out our project.

The Radium SmartChain offers a multi-layered blockchain to securely establish identities of its user groups and allow for publishing of any type of document - including but not limited to software file checksums. Building upon that concept, we also offer a variety of services to promote usability and functionality of our service offering; such as our One-Click Verification application, which allows for instant hash validation against published (Proof of existence) check-sums on our SmartChain - tied back to the registered and organizations identity.

Please feel free to check out our Wiki sites, and come join us in our Slack.
We would love to get the New Economy Movement involved with out project and utilizing our services!

Your friendly Project Radon Representative,
Boardwalk :slight_smile:

Hope to hear from you soon!

Nice Project. Please send me NEM address of the funding account.
Regards Howi_

You are not supposed to fund it directly: NEM Community Fund Guidelines

Howi53. Thanks for being so generous. Save that for your grandchildren. :smiley:

In the meantime, just watch the young ones build wealth for your grandchildren. lol.

But yeah. Good project.

+1 thanks Howi53

good idea, i’m in

I like the idea very much.
Have you given the long term sustainability more thoughts yet, @jabo38?

First part of the plan is to get the website and wallet up and going. Then look around and see where we are.

Second part of the plan is after it is up and running to continue to develop the wallet version and website version based on feedback.

The wallet version will obviously need people to fund their transactions themselves.

But for the website. I would maybe like to seek 1,000,000 XEM from the unconventional marketing fund and then give away as many free stamps as possible. That would give me 38,000+ stamps. Then I would like to post all over the internet that NEM offer’s a free Apostille service, so people can now notarize and time stamp their documents. I think if we can build a nice website and good service, this could be a really good chance to help advertise that NEM is pretty awesome tech, get people to look into it more (way better than a faucet), and all the funds go right back to harvesters so they are happy too.

If we got 38,000 transactions, I would consider that a huge success, at which point we might want to look into becoming a real business. It would be nice to get a million transactions a year and charge a small amount for each. That would be enough I guess to keep a small business up and going part time. Or look to offering services with large contracts that want their own Mijin chain and want to do A LOT of stamps as a part of a larger on chain business plan. But if we didn’t even get 38,000 and we were giving them away for free, then I guess it wouldn’t have been viable as a business anyway, but at least we gave it a good try.

All that is a loooooong way away and many things would have to happen first. Right now we are just trying to get some basic free and open source services up and going to help NEM out.

Great name. Liking the proposal so far.

Is the NEM notary system targeted for real users for real-world use cases?

If so, I can see the NEM Apostille service adding more value to the NEM ecosystem :rocket: