Credit :Dex (

Credit :Dex (

New collaboration in Singapore to develop framework for safe and secure data exchange

Singapore’s Info-communications Media Development Authority (IMDA), PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) Singapore and Singapore-based startup, DEX have entered into a collaboration to co-develop a Trusted Data Framework for safe, transparent, auditable and secure data exchange, that is compliant to regulations and scalable. (According to Channel NewsAsia, this model will not be the only project supported by IMDA.)

A blog post on Medium by Dex describes the objective of the collaboration as addressing trust and security concerns and introducing a new model where data providers and consumers can transact in a safe and secure manner to solve common social and business challenges.

The framework is expected to help businesses leverage and monetise their data. The technology and software will be open sourced to facilitate replication of the model and enable the creation of more solutions on the blockhain-based Ocean protocol built by DEX, to enable data exchange. The Ocean protocol helps to unlock data, particularly for AI. It is a tokenised service layer that exposes data, storage, compute and algorithms for consumption with a set of deterministic proofs on availability and integrity that serve as verifiable service agreements. 

IMDA will provide regulatory guidance and co-create new codes of practice to mitigate risks in order to ensure appropriate data practices in usage, handling and sharing. It will also work towards further government understanding of commercial sharing arrangements between companies; and where appropriate, consider regulatory sandboxes to facilitate further innovation.

PwC Singapore’s role would be to assist in in the design of the Trusted Data Framework to underpin the Data Marketplace. The Framework is intended to offer companies a means to establish coherence, consistency and interoperability across information assets. The framework would address issues with regard to data privacy and the rights of companies to buy and sell data.

To support the development of the data exchange framework and marketplace technology, six industry-led pilots have been launched in the Built Environment, Finance, Healthcare, Mobility, Consumer Goods & Retail, and Utility sectors.

These pilots would improve understanding of the challenges and requirements of commercial sharing arrangements between companies and if regulatory sandboxes are necessary to facilitate further innovation. The development sprints are expected to take place over approximately 12 months each, and each sprint will be launched at a different time.

The blog post talks about some of the examples of pilots from the health and retail areas.

Sharing healthcare data

Anti-coagulation therapy with blood-thinning medication like warfarin is used as a treatment for patients with heart conditions or following a mechanical heart valve (MHV) replacement surgery to prevent blood clots and ultimately heart stroke. The demand for anti-coagulation care is rising, with the growing number of elderly and increasing prevalence of chronic heart disease and conditions, such as atrial fibrillation (AF). For these patients, regular testing of the International Normalised Ratio (INR; a test to determine the clotting tendency of blood) levels is necessary to ensure the right dosage and effectiveness of therapy. The wrong dosage can potentially lead to complications such as bleeding or stroke.

Roche Diagnostics intends to collaborate on a pilot project to study the safe and secure transmission of the INR results of patients on anti-coagulation therapy from the home monitoring device to the hospital information system.

The Bluetooth-enabled Roche CoaguChek home monitoring device allows patients under therapy to conveniently test and monitor their INR levels, in less than five minutes. With this automatic real-time result transmission, health care professionals can more effectively manage their patients on coagulation monitoring.


With Singapore’s ageing population, there is a rise in chronic diseases and dependence on social care. One-third of people aged 65 and over in Singapore live alone, and this number continues to rise. There is an increasing demand for services that support independent living while delivering quality care.

ConnectedLife is a home monitoring solution designed specifically for older adults and their caregivers.  It combines Internet of Things (IoT) devices such as ambient sensors monitoring motion and sound, 24/7 personal assistance, and unique insurance coverage provided by Aviva. The solution aims to allow older adults to live independently while enabling family members to safeguard their loved ones and providing care professionals real-time information.

As part of the installation of the smart sensors and devices, ConnectedLife is required to document the individual home (photographs, survey, comments) and record various wellness indicators of the older adults, such as weight and mobility, etc. This data, alongside the daily free-living data collected by ConnectedLife has enormous value for government agencies (housing development), integrated health clusters, and insurance applications (risk of accident).

Ensuring safe, secure and trusted access to the data assets in an even wider ecosystem could enable the development of even more valuable and impactful applications.

But ConnectedLife does not want to lose control over the data assets or risk non-compliance with the Personal Data Protection Act 2012 (PDPA) of the Republic of Singapore and EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Similarly, Government agencies, Healthcare and Insurance providers will not want to lose control of their data assets and applications with ConnectedLife.

Through a pilot, ConnectedLife and other stakeholders can leverage the Trusted Data Framework and decentralised data exchange platform to demonstrate how access to, and exchange of, additional, alternative data assets can transform analytics, prediction, and prevention, supporting Ageing-in-Place.

Customer insights

Multi-national national consumer goods leader, Unilever invests a significant amount of resources to understand shopper behavior in order to offer consumers customised best in class products and services.

Acquired retailer data can help in such analysis, but it tends to be limited and fragmented, making it difficult to aggregate. Hence, the available data may not provide a comprehensive representation of the reality.

By participating in the development pilot with IMDA, DEX, and PwC, Unilever can extract meaningful shopper insights from conventional as well as non-traditional sources, and explore trusted access and fair value exchange to higher-resolution and alternative data assets to improve customer understanding.

Supporting smallholder farmers

Unilever is also looking to help smallholder farmers achieve better efficiency and productivity by improving and accelerating access to data that is already collected, but not shared, by various ecosystem actors. This would be explored with support from IMDA, DEX, and PWC.

Unilever, is working with Grow Asia in this area. Grow Asia is a multi-stakeholder partnership platform that aims to reach 10 million smallholder farmers by 2020, helping them access knowledge, technology, finance, and markets to increase their productivity, profitability, and environmental sustainability by 20%.

Unilever and Grow Asia understand that oil palm cultivation has become important to rural livelihoods in Indonesia, particularly among smallholders. Access to information, credit, and services could help these farmers adopt sustainable production practices, thereby improving their livelihoods and driving more sustainable outcomes. 

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