Blockchain is arguably the most disruptive technology since the advent of internet. Using blockchain technology many industries have attained transformative transition. For instance, smart contracts have improved supply chain management, making it more transparent. Bitcoin, based on Blockchain technology, has made monetary transactions more transparent and secure.
In simple words, blockchain is now talk of the tech town. And even though coming across the word ‘blockchain’ is frequent in cliques, meetups, tech groups and conferences, the understanding of blockchain technology, still leaves people scratching their heads.
If you’re a developer or an engineer looking to understand blockchain, proceed on.
What is blockchain exactly?
As simple as it may sound, blockchain is a long chain of blocks. In the context of blockchain, a ‘block’ refers to time-stamped data which is connected to the block created before it, which is further connected to the block created before it. Thus, turning into a long chain of blocks. The current block connects to the block created right before it.
This block contains information and is visible to all people on a blockchain network. Any tempering with blocks creates another block which reflects the changes made to it.
How is blockchain technology helpful?
Blockchain technology brings usefulness to the table. With its inherent features– transparency, security, distribution, it has the capability of turning most susceptible and risk prone operations into secure and transparent processes.
- Transparency – The information available on blockchain is encrypted with cryptography. To access this information, you need public address.
- Decentralization – Data available on blockchain is spread over a network, instead of one central place. Presence of complete data at one place makes it susceptible to theft, hacking, and corruption. Blockchain with its distributed ledger trait takes away that pain. In case of hacking, it would require hackers to enter from multiple points instead of one.
- Dependability – Data can’t be messed with in blockchain. Any changes made to data on blockchain appears alongside original data. So any changes will reflect right next to it in the form of another block.
How far has blockchain reached?
Blockchain has made strides in the industry. Starting from smart contracts to preventing identity theft, the technology has transformed major aspects of industry operations. Some of the remarkable ones are–
- Smart Contracts – Ethereum is a blockchain-based project to create smart contracts easily. Finance industry, susceptible to frauds, can benefit immensely from smart contracts by making transactions more transparent.
- Preventing Identity theft – Blockchain offers an extremely secure system for identity. Compared to other existing systems, hacking into a blockchain system is much more complex and tedious.
- Tokenization—Valuable assets or data can be tokenized using blockchain. So while token can be move over a network, it would not hamper the security of original data or any other asset.
- Medical Insurance – Blockchain is used to store patient data and other personal details which can mapped in the future while claiming insurance. This eliminates cases of fraud claims.
Blockchain has definitely come a long way, both, in its application and use across the industry. However, as the technology matures there will be more possibilities. And yet to see how the technology unfurls itself in the future.