I Threw Away $7.6 Million In Bitcoin Five years ago, I threw away a hard drive. An utterly generic 250GB portable hard drive, already a few years old, with a duo of dings and scrapes in its shell and with the beginnings of an audible click that would have eventually killed it. It had a […]
1. Digital Identity
Just imagine never having to worry about your digital security every again. Its a massive problem in the world.
Which is now estimated to cost the industry about $Legal.Five billion annually, according to a report released Thursday by Distil Networks.
That means for every $Three spent, $1 is going to ad fraud.
Blockchain technologies makes tracking and managing digital identities both secure and efficient, resulting in seamless sign-ons and diminished fraud.
Be it banking, healthcare, national security, citizenship documentation or online retailing, identity authentication and authorization is a process intricately woven into commerce and culture worldwide.
Do you recall what happened with Target?
The data breach at Target was significantly broader than originally reported: The company said that seventy million customers had information such as their name, address, phone number and e-mail address hacked in the breach.
Events such as hacked databases and breached accounts are shining light on the growing problems of a technologically advanced society, without outpaced identity-based security innovations.
Blockchain technology offers a solution to many digital identity issues, where identity can be uniquely authenticated in an incontrovertible, immutable, and secure manner. Current methods use problematic password-based systems of collective secrets exchanged and stored on insecure systems. Blockchain based authentication systems are based on incontrovertible identity verification using digital signatures based on public key cryptography. In blockchain identity authentication, the only check performed is whether or not the transaction was signed by the correct private key. It is inferred that whoever has access to the private key is the holder and the exact identity of the possessor is deemed irrelevant.
Blockchain Identity Use Cases
Blockchain technology can be applied to identity applications in the following areas:
- Digital Identities
- Birth Ceritificates
- Wedding Certificates
- Online Account Login
ShoCard is a digital identity that protects consumer privacy and is as effortless to understand and use as demonstrating a driver’s license. It’s optimized for mobile and so secure that a bank can rely on it.
Two. Distributed cloud storage
Blockchain data storage will become a massive disruptor in the near future. (3-5 years)
Why you might ask?
Current cloud storage services are centralized — thus you the users must place trust in a single storage provider. “They” control all of your online assets.
On the other forearm with the Blockchain, this can become decentralized. For example, Storj is beta-testing cloud storage using a Blockchain-powered network to improve security and decrease dependency. Additionally users (you) can rent out their excess storage capacity, Airbnb-style, creating fresh marketplaces.
Sidenote: Look out for petite niche business popping up using Slock.it technology and Storj together. If I were Airbnb or Uber, I would be paying close attention to this.
Anyone on the internet can store your data at a pre-agreed price. Hashing and having the data in numerous locations are the keys to securing it.
Storj.io and factom are two start-ups exploring this idea. After encrypting your data, it is sent out to a network with effortless to track basic metadata.
Trio. Decentralized notary
One interesting feature of the blockchain is its timestamp feature. The entire network essentially validates the state of packaged chunk of data (called a hash) at a certain specific time. As a trustless decentralized network, it essentially confirms the existence of [something] at a stated time that is further provable in a court of law. Until now, only centralized notary services could serve this purpose.
Manuel Aráoz, a Buenos Aires, Argentina-based developer, who built Proof of Existence as a decentralized method of verification, a kind of cryptographic notary service explained:
“As the blockchain is a public database, it is a distributed sort of consensus, your document becomes certified in a distributed sort of way.”
Proof of Existence permits users to upload a file and pay a transaction fee to have a cryptographic proof of it included on the bitcoin block chain. The actual file is not stored online and therefore does not risk unwanted publication of the user’s material.
After anonymously uploading the document and paying the network fee, a hash of the document (or any other type of digital file) is generated as part of the transaction.
The Proof of Existence website shows recently uploaded files that have hashes on the block chain.
This, in effect, uses the public and ledger-like nature of the block chain to store the proof of your file, which can later be verified should an issue of authorship or dating arise.
“Basically, by inserting the cryptographic hash of the document in a transaction, when that transaction is mined into a block, the block timestamp becomes the document’s timestamp,” said Aráoz.
Just imagine never having to pay for notarization ever again: The world is evolving towards a value base economy. Where, if you are not adding value to entire, you are no longer needed. And its about time. To many archaic systems exists today that only leech of of you instead of adding value in your life.
Four. Brainy contracts
What if you could cut your mortgage rate, make it lighter to update your will?
The world of wise contracts is prompt approaching, but what are they?
These are legally tying programmable digitized contracts entered on the blockchain. They are clever because they are automated and can self-execute. What developers do is to implement legal contracts as variables and statements that can release of funds using the bitcoin network as a ‘3rd party executor’, rather than trusting a single central authority.
For example, if two people want to exchange $100 at a specific time in future when a set of preconditions are met, the conditions, payout and parties’ details would be programmed into a wise contract. Once the defined conditions are met, funds would be released and sent to the suitable party as per terms.
By providing computers control over contracts, we can make business more efficient and make the legal system more equitable.
“Smart contracts solve the problem of intermediary trust inbetween parties to an agreement, whether that is inbetween people transferring assets like gold, or executing decisions inbetween two parties in a betting contract,” explained Vitalik Buterin, a founder of Ethereum.
platforms like Ethereum are bringing brainy contracts closer to reality. Additionally, because data stored in the Blockchain cannot be tampered with, basic contracts like marriages have already been recorded in code .
Five. Digital voting
The greatest barrier to getting electoral processes online, according to its detractors, is security. Using blockchain, a voter could check that her or his vote was successfully transmitted while remaining anonymous to the rest of the world. In 2014, Liberal Alliance, a political party in Denmark, became the very first organization to use blockchain to vote . With American voter turnout still shockingly low, distributed digital voting may represent a way to enfranchise non-participants.
“Many states use voting machines that are over ten years old that are not only antiquated and failing, they are also becoming increasingly expensive to maintain as parts are no longer manufactured. Election fraud undermines the very fabric of democracy.” -BTC
Last year a team accredited to observe the two thousand thirteen municipal elections in Estonia – the only country to run Internet voting on a broad scale – exposed that they observed election officials downloading key software over insecure Internet connections, typing PINs and passwords in view of cameras, and preparing election software on insecure PCs.Norway also canceled trials of e-voting systems in local and national elections, concluding that voters’ fears about their votes becoming public could undermine democratic processes. (Source: A security analysis of Estonia's Internet voting system by international e-voting experts. )
Just imagine a society where your vote is ensured from the convenience of your phone.
Can you imagine how the landscape of the political system would switch?
Can you imagine what would happen to our governmental structures?
My hope is, that Blockchain technologies will become the gold standard for all nations of the world in the near future. It is time for our system and governments to become more translucent.
As mentioned above, most of these applications are still under developed The future potential of the blockchain applications is still unraveling. The next couples of years will be all about experimenting and applying to all aspects of society. Regardless of which application comes very first on a global scale. The bottom line is, Blockchain is here to stay and will and is converting how our society functions.
I thought it was interesting that musical artist Imogen Heap is releasing her fresh album via blockchain.
So when I met Zoë [Keating, seated next to Imogen], about five months ago, six months ago, it’s all happened very quickly. She mentioned that she’d been at this event, and heard about Blockchain technology, and I realized there is actually a way that you can connect a file with its payment linked into a digital wallet. And so when somebody listens to a track — the technology is very close to being there — it instantly recompenses me, and then I can split it off to my choreographer, to Zoë for thanking her, to whatever, it can instantaneously go into their bank accounts. Instead of having to wait two years, sometimes, even more, for money to come back to me, it can be instant.
Here are few practical applications of blockchain technology in fintech outside of bitcoin:
Blockchain could eliminate a lot of friction and stock tampering happening at the Wall Street.
Foremost, reduce the costs and time of stock purchases as right now when a stock is traded, it has to pass through brokers, exchanges, and needs to be “settled”. Of course, everyone receives the cut from the operation and the processing time may take days, especially when trading occurs over the weekends.
Additionally, blockchain will permit eliminating a lot of gray tactics used by traders such as “ naked brief selling ” and in general, adding more transparency to the operational process.
One of the largest US online retailers, Overstock determined to concentrate on building the crypto-capitalism future. In summer 2016, the company unveiled their fresh blockchain-based private and public equities trading platform tØ , which permits instant and secure share trading online.
Unlike Nasdaq stock exchange company, which has experimented with blockchain-powered trading as well in partnership with Chain , tØ founders primarily confirmed that their company does not plan to use bitcoin blockchain for issuing stocks.
E-Commerce and Online Marketplaces
Openbazaar startup has embarked on a fresh mission to introduce a fee-free online marketplace similar to eBay, which is powered by blockchain.
They promote an active exchange of goods and services inbetween two parties without relying on a risky centralized authority and hence, enabling more people to embark their e-commerce business without paying for extra e-commerce implements.
The company founders stated their “listing agnostic” position and promised not to enforce rigorous moderation rules to what could be exchanged within the community. However, they promise not to promote the service to those, who might be tempted to use it for illegal activities such as gun trade.
The company also plans to expand the scope of services to wise contract and P2P lending in the future. Again, no central arbiter will be in place to overlook those. Instead, Openbazaar aims to create a P2P arbitration process within the community, which would permit users to establish authority figures, who in turn would help to certify the transactions and to resolve disputes inbetween users.
Almost 25% of the global remittance market is still managed by the large players like the Western Union and MoneyGram, processing over $500 billion in remittances per year.
However, the fees for sending micro-payments, particularly popular in the developing countries like The Philippines and Nigeria, are inhibitive. For example, the majority of Asian workers send a quarter of their private income ($200 on average) to their relatives. Those $12 in fees paid for the transfer often equal to their half day’s wage.
A number of blockchain fintech startups have emerged to cater P2P micro-payments. Sentbe offers a 60% less expensive service for sending money abroad and offers cash pickup locations as an alternative to card/bank transfers – a good selling point for attracting the unbanked population to their service.
Abra is a similar app aimed at US-consumers, which also permits conducting free P2P money transfers and receiving payouts either to your bank account or in cash by using only a person’s phone number.
Unlike other popular mobile payment apps like Venmo or PayPal, Abra permits users to hold digital cash on their smartphones without any 3rd party getting a grip of their money. Again, that was made possible by using bitcoin blockchain technology, which fixes the value of digital cash in real time without any centralized financial intermediary.
If you are interested in this topic you might also like to read this article – Applications of Blockchain Technology in Fintech