Seagate is building out a blockchain-based supply chain tracking system that will allow it, storage array maker IBM, its technology integrators and users to follow hard drives from assembly line and installation to end of life.

Seagate is working with IBM, which is supplying the Hyperledger blockchain platform via its cloud service; IBM will also benefit by becoming one of the permissioned blockchain users as it's one of the Seagate's drive customers.

[ Further reading: Coming soon: Public blockchains for private business data ]

Once up and running, the blockchain will be able to track the provenance of tens of millions of hard drives shipped each year, according to Manuel Offenberg, managing technologist for Seagate's Data Security Research division.

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