Blockchain and Bitcoin will forever be intertwined; one makes the other possible. However, a blockchain developer isn’t limited to cryptocurrency applications. Indeed, blockchain can help dApp development solve use cases besides cryptocurrencies. Any business transaction that requires high levels of confidentiality can employ blockchain technology to provide an infrastructure that delivers capabilities faster at a lower cost.
“The need for a single centralized source of truth about identities is becoming a necessity in every community and corporation,” according to technology writer Sam Andoni. For dApp development, this means there are a range of potential applications that can employ blockchain.
Insurance Claims Processing
Insurance processing is time-consuming and often frustrating, particularly when it relies upon transactions involving manual forms. Blockchain meets the needs for transparency, a clear “paper trail” and privacy—encryption provides insurers with complete confidence that asset ownership is both clearly detailed and confidential.
Internet of Things (IoT)
oon, just about everything we use in daily life will be connected—our cars, our appliances, our lights. According to some industry forecasts, IoT global market revenues are expected to grow to anywhere from $267 billion to $457 billion. Which means a whole lot of things are going to be interconnected. Blockchain will play a role in IoT growth by ensuring information is only accepted and released to trusted entities, while at the same time allows for the analysis of vast amounts of data to continually improve the efficiency and efficacy of IoT.
For example, smart appliances and lighting help you better control your energy consumption. Energy companies can use that data to improve their own power distribution operations. However, no one wants some corporate entity digging directly into your personal habits. Blockchain solves that problem.
Digital smart contracts are self-executable, eliminating the need for a third-party intermediary. Blockchain not only ensures confidentiality of the transaction, but also that all parties to the contract are aware of all terms and conditions under which it is automatically implemented. Such smart contracts can be applied to crowdfunding agreements, insurance premiums and financial derivatives, among other potential uses.
HIPAA privacy laws establish standards to protect personal health information for all health plan and healthcare transactions conducted electronically. These records can be stored on a blockchain ledger accessible only to those with a private key. These records could pertain to patient data, drug use, testing results and regulatory compliance, among other aspects of general healthcare management. For example, a hospital admittance record could be stored on a blockchain and automatically sent to an insurance provider.
Say goodbye to showing your ID to prove you’re old enough to buy alcohol or that you’re registered for a college class, or that your driving credentials are in order. In the near future, that will all be accessible via the ledger of a transparent account secured by blockchain technology.
The problem with entering a PIN to unlock your phone is that it depends on a SIM card that can’t be easily transferred or copied. So if you forget your PIN, well, while all is not lost, a blockchain ledger is an easier yet safe and secure way for someone to quickly replace and replicate a lost code.
Maintaining Privacy in an Increasingly Unprivate World
These days in particular, as more data breaches come to light, people are beginning to worry about their personal privacy. While blockchain technology isn’t totally immune from cyberattack (nothing ever is), it does provide the highest level of identify protection to protect people from spammers, schemers and malevolent attackers. We have seen the future of digital privacy protection, and that future is blockchain.
By Mike Kelley