The Blockchain Effect: 1,000 digital marriage certificates produced in Washoe County


    There are rumors of a "blockchain city" east of Reno, but Washoe County has already been using the new technology for eight months.

    "We've distributed 1,000 digital marriage certificates all over the world," said Hunter Halcomb, systems technician with Washoe County Recorder's Office.

    Washoe County is using blockchain to record marriage certificates in a much more secure and quicker way. The technology allows the County to have a running list of certificates, that can't be tampered with. The certificates can be delivered to all over the world within minutes.

    "We've sent marriage certificates to Spain, Canada, multiple countries in Asia," said Halcomb.

    Blockchain is a list of transactions that is dispersed to certain computers on the internet. When somebody makes a transaction, all computers have to agree to the change. It essentially cuts out the central authority that authenticates transactions.

    In the near future, blockchain will become an even bigger part of Washoe County's plan for document storage.

    "We're tasked with storing all the deeds and marriage certificates permanently, we have them going all the way back to the beginning of the County," said Halcomb. "Our archive of all those documents will be secured on the same blockchain using the same technology and we'll be rolling that out over the next year."

    To obtain a digital marriage certificate click here.

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