The ITIN “V519-9QQW-8” has been assigned to the “VestChain” (VEST) token by ITSA.
About VestChain (VEST)
VestChain describes itself as a decentralized accessible blockchain and cryptocurrency infrastructure which aims to be an open-source content management system. It is promoting a smart contract platform which is developed out of a scientific doctrine and a methodology putting research in the first place. Its native utility token VEST is us as a medium-of-exchange and fuels VestChain’s ecosystem.
The International Token Standardization Association (ITSA) e.V. is a not for profit association of German law that aims at promoting the development and implementation of comprehensive market standards for the identification, classification and analysis of DLT- and blockchain-based cryptographic tokens.
When transferring, buying or referencing a token (e.g. in a contract), you have to make sure it is the correct one on the correct ledger rather than a copy on an obscure fork. But how to identify these tokens uniquely, permanently over time and internationally? Referring to tokens with their name, ticker or smart contract address only is prone to errors, ambiguity and misspellings.
For this, ITSA has developed the International Token Identification Number (ITIN) and its technical foundation, the Uniform Token Locator (UTL).
Efficient and seamless token identification
An ITIN provides the details for the exact identification and location of tokens at any time and comes with great benefits:
"ITIN is the first identifier that embraces the decentralized nature of the token economy. Tokens can now be uniquely identified and referenced in e.g. legal contracts without worrying about forks. This is a decisive foundation for a healthy growth of the token ecosystem."Project Manager ITIN at ITSA
The Elements of Unique Token Identification
What makes the ITIN so powerful is its technological foundation, the Uniform Token Locator (UTL). Think of a website in the WWW. It can be uniquely accessed by an internet address – precisely, an URL – even if the content itself is moved from one server to another. In the same way, tokens can be uniquely addressed through the UTL. Just like the URL for websites consists of different components such as a protocol and a subdomain, the UTL consists of the following elements that are provided automatically by ITSA:
- Genesis hash: The hash of the genesis block of a blockchain.
- Post-fork hash (PFH): The hash of the first finalized block complying to the protocol rules of the newest blockchain fork. This hash is generally unique.
- Recent hash (RH): The newest known hash of the chain.
- Optional: Smart contract address: Required for non-native tokens.
- Optional: Token sub-address: Required for multi-token contracts.
Shorten It. Map It. The Interplay of ITIN and UTL.
UTLs are quite lengthy even though they are technically correct and needed for a unique identification. We therefore developed the following approach: ITIN. It works like an UTL shortener allowing long UTLs to have a short identifier:
You can also obtain UTLs based on an ITIN. This works as follows: From the ITIN page, one can always generate an up-to-date UTL.
Example: Here is the ITIN page of Tether. On this page you can find existing UTLs for this token and a button to generate the most up-to-date UTL.
And – the other way around – you can easily resolve UTLs to ITINs using ITSA servers. So, you could for example take some smart contract from Ethereum and ITSA will return the ITIN (“reverse lookup”), in case an ITIN has been assigned.
Example: Here is the UTL page of Binance. On this page you can easily see the variable ITIN that represents the ITIN of Binance’s BNB token.