eco-Whitepaper Blockchain in SMEs - Prof. Dr. Norbert Pohlmann
eco-Whitepaper Blockchain in SMEs
Blockchain has made the leap into the public arena: Daily newspapers, business magazines, news portals and blogs are reporting almost daily about the new technology, which is the foundation for the crypto currency Bitcoin. And it’s not only IT companies that are exploring blockchain. Insurance firms, logistics companies, banks, stock exchanges, and companies from numerous other sectors are working on scenarios for possible applications. What initially looked like a hype is now becoming established as a trend with a highly promising future. As a quintessential cross-sectoral technology, blockchain has the potential to revolutionize entire value chains – because it enables the transaction of values in digital spacewithoutthe need of an intermediary, and it represents a new, efficient method for the verification of data and data transfers in multi-stakeholder systems.
While – with the exception of the Bitcoinblockchain – past years have been characterized by theoretical concepts and Proofs of Concept, we are nowseeingmore engineersthan visionaries, and they aresubjectingblockchain technology to a reality check. The question of IT security has been an important element of this. After all, many of the possible applications are proceeding in very sensitive areas such as finance, insurance, and medicine. One advantage of blockchain: The technology offers “Security by Design” – as a result of its fundamental conception, blockchain is very difficult to compromise. Nonetheless, as is always the case for IT systems, several challenges remain.
An adaptationof the technology for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) requires above all trust in the security and reliability of the technology: Before the technology is likely to be used, itneeds not only to be secure, but also resource-efficient user-friendly. Interoperability with other systems is also of importance.
This paper by the Competence Groups Blockchain and Security in eco –Association of the Internet Industry provides an overview of the most important questions that SMEs hould answerbefore initiating their own blockchain projects.
Blockchain is a communication protocolin which transactions that have been carried out can be saved in a transparent manner in distributed databases. The protocol itself makes a range of functions available to ensure that the communication can be undertaken securely, transparently, and pseudonymously. To achieve this, alltransactions and information are simultaneously saved in many different locations. The integrity of the data is guaranteed through the saving of the hash value of the respective previous data set.
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