What is Factom
Factom is peer to peer, open source, decentralised data validation platform, built atop Bitcoin blockchain network, and has its own native token (currency) called Factoids (FCT).
However, people use Factom and Factoids interchangeably and often they refer to Factoid (FCT) when mentioning Factom.
History of Factom
In January 2014, Paul Snow and Davis Johnston came up with the idea of a data integrity checker system, built atop blockchains and in June 2014, the coding began on Github. The project was originally named Notary Chains.
In November 2014, the whitepaper was released for Factom. Subsequently, in January 2015, Factom 0.1 was released and the initial token sale took place between March 31 to May 15 in 2015.
In September 2015, the Factom Genesis network went live.
In June 2016, Factom collaborated with US Dept. of Homeland Security on a project called “Blockchain Software to prove Integrity of Captured data from border devices”.
How Factom Works
To understand how Factoids work, first we need to understand how Factom network works.
Any user of Factom network can ‘hash’ any digital file including images, software, videos or personal files. Hashes are like digital signature and is unique for every asset. The hashes of multiple files are collated to create a single Hash block (called Entry Block) which are then combined to create a Directory Block.
This directory block is inserted into the blockchain network of Bitcoin and for future references, one can retrieve the hash for a particular file and check it against a freshly generated hash of the same file. If the hashes match, the file’s integrity is intact.
Factoids are needed to use this service. Factoids are used to buy Entry Credit (EC) which is needed to create the Entry Block.
Factom Uses SHA-256 for the hashing purpose.
Factom comes with a very unique proposal and the system has some inherent advantages.
- Unique Proposition: Factom comes with a very original idea and a very appealing idea as well. With everything going digital, the integrity of the data and files is going to pay a big part in the society. Instead of trusting a company, Factom ensures this integrity using decentralised Blockchain protocol.
- Stability of Bitcoin: Factom runs of the tried and tested blockchain network of Bitcoin which brings stability, safety and security to this platform.
- Multiple Validation Protocols: Factom uses Proof of Existence, Proof of Process and Proof of Audit to validate the data on the network which makes the data triple safe and reliable.
- Strong Hashing: Factom uses SHA-256 encryption and hashing technique which is leading technology in the world and is almost unbreakable. This leads to safety of the hashes. These hashes can not be reverse engineered to get to the original digital asset.
- Fully Featured Coins: Factoids are traded at the all the leading exchanges and it is a fully featured cryptocurrency of its own. They can be traded, stored, invested into and converted to other cryptocurrencies or fiat currencies easily.