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Trump signs $ 700 billion military spending bill to authorize blockchain security research

U.S. President Trump has signed a $ 700 billion military spending bill that includes authorizing a blockchain safety study.

According to Coindesk's report in September this year, the bill, which is driven by the U.S. Senate, calls on the U.S. Department of Defense to investigate "potential attack and defense network applications for blockchain and other distributed database technologies."

This is itself part of the Modern Government Technology Act (MGT), which seeks to enhance government IT and cybersecurity systems.

According to the latest version of the act, which President Trump has formally signed earlier today, this blockchain study will include "an assessment of the efforts of foreign forces, extremist groups and criminal networks to harness these technologies; and Assess the use of these technologies or the planned use of these technologies by the federal government and key infrastructure networks.

According to the text, the results of the study will be submitted to Congress sometime in the next six months. Although the study was prepared by the Department of Defense - many applications have been explored in the past - the final product is likely to include inputs from other federal agencies and departments.

Some observers argue that while this forms a small part of the main financing law, this measure, proposed by Ohio Senator Rob Portman, may help fuel the investigation into the potential use of blockchain within the U.S. government.

Trey Hodgkins, senior vice president for public sector information technology industry council (ITIC) in Washington, DC, told Coindesk last month:

"The blockchain is clearly one of the technical capabilities that Congress intends to allow agencies to investigate, and what they want to do is create some dollar that gives them some flexibility so that institutions can decide for themselves what to invest."