Blockchain and IoT

Blockchain Use in IoT is Vital, But Still Far From Perfect

Businesses understand that IoT fits perfectly with other popular enterprise computing technologies, and Blockchain is no exception.

Implementation of blockchain in an IoT application can turn out to be challenging and requires a profound knowledge.

Blockchain is a cryptographically secured distributed ledger technology that allows safe data transfer between two parties. This is a highly secured technique and the data protected by that blockchain can’t be fiddled with or forged. Thus, it becomes evident why the implementation of blockchain is an attractive choice for companies?

Over and above the bare fact of the ability of blockchain to distribute trusted information securely across the network, part of the reason is its place in the technology stack, as indicated by Jay Fallah, the CTO and co-founder of an IoT security startup – NXMLabs.

He said –

“Blockchain stands at a very interesting intersection. Computing has accelerated in the last 15 years in terms of storage, CPU, etc. but networking hasn’t changed that much until recently. Blockchain’s not a network technology, it’s not a data technology, it’s both.”

Is Using Blockchain with IoT Effective?

Different vendors sell different products based on blockchain for different use-cases, that use different implementations of the technology, some of which are not at all similar to the linear, mined-transaction blockchain used in digital currency.

Now, that implies it’s a capability which you’d buy from a vendor for a particular use-case, at this point. Some client organisations have the in-house expertise to use a blockchain security system, as per the 451 Research senior analyst Csilla Zsigri. The notion with any blockchain application is to play to its strengths creating a trusted platform for critical information, she said.

Zsigri said –

“That’s where I see it really adding value, just in adding a layer of trust and validation.”

While the basic notion of Blockchain-powered IoT applications is well-understood, it doesn’t apply to every IoT use cases, experts agree. Applying blockchain to non-transactional systems is not generally the right move.

In case there’s not any requirement of sharing data between two different parties – as opposed to moving data from sensor to back-end – Blockchain does not usually make sense since it really does nothing for the key value-add present in most IoT implementations today: data analysis.

Clift-Jennings said –

“W’re still in kind of the early dial-up era of blockchain today. It’s slower than a typical database, it often isn’t even readable, it often doesnn’t have a query engine tied to it. You don’t really get privacy, by nature of it.”