How the technology works
Intelligent vouchers look like physical credit or debit cards with more advanced technology contained within. Intelligent vouchers contain ‘digital assets’ which can be used to obtain goods and services from merchants that Red Cross Red Crescent have agreements with. Digital assets are like digital money but without the risks that come carrying physical cash. Digital assets can also be used to represent items such as emergency kits, sleeping blankets, food etc.
Each intelligent voucher contains a unique QR code. This QR code is an identifier for that voucher and can be associated with a digital identity and/or digital assets. With this technology, it then becomes possible to send digital assets to any affected community member anywhere in the world within seconds. It is similar to topping up mobile phone credit for end users. This is particularly useful in times of emergencies where it is difficult to get aid to affected communities quickly.
At the point of sale, the end user presents their voucher to a merchant and the merchant scans the QR code. After scanning the QR code, the merchant views a terminal which displays the individuals’ identity and the goods/services that they are entitled to. Then, the individual can choose to spend their digital assets in whichever way is best suited to them. The value adds of this technology is that there is a permanent and completely transparent record of this transaction. This transaction record is indelible and ensures that fraud is significantly reduced.
The solution is underpinned by Blockchain technology. At its simplest explanation, Blockchain (aka distributed ledger) is a global shared ledger which keeps a record of all transactions that have ever occurred. The AID: Tech platform is a customised version of Blockchain technology for aid organisations that has improved transaction processing capabilities
How can it be used from a Fundraising perspective?
There are both practical and theoretical applications for this technology. From a practical perspective, the ability to transact with digital assets is very powerful. Using intelligent vouchers is a much more efficient approach to managing cash, and its transparency allows for ease of fundraising in the future.
From a theoretical perspective, lots of charities and organisations rely on their reputation to raise funds. By using technology that is 100% transparent for the distribution of funds will ensure that organisation reputation is protected.