Could Blockchain Be the Answer to User Cybersecurity?
As technology becomes more advanced, organizations must adapt their strategies to protect and organize their most critical assets. At present, the way in which we understand how the Internet works is based on HTTP, or hypertext transfer protocol.
According to the inventor of HTTP, Tim Berners-Lee, the next phase of the Internet will deal more directly with linked data and data sharing. This phase, which some experts are deeming the ‘World Wide Web 3.0,’ will be conceptually adopted by Internet users as blockchain technology and will address the issues that arise in relation to data ownership.
Blockchain is already being utilized to protect against cyber-attacks and augment cybersecurity across various industries. Blockchain, which was founded nearly 10 years ago, was first introduced as a way to manage Bitcoin—the world’s first cryptocurrency.
However, as one of the most secure networks available today, blockchain is now being used in a multitude of ways to mitigate risk and reduce the number of cyber breaches that organizations face.
First, What is a Blockchain?
Blockchain, at its core, is a peer-to-peer network that gives individuals the opportunity to store and distribute information without any centralized authority managing the shared data. Any individual user can add information to the blockchain, which is secured through cryptography.
As information is added, users are responsible for verifying the data and overseeing its upkeep. The result of this is that users have jurisdiction over their own data, able to verify where the information is coming from.
Users can also make updates to their data, which is done by adding new blocks of information upon existing blocks. These blocks create a very specific chain of code, which is carefully tracked and logged every time an update is made. This means that any change or alteration to the blockchain’s information can be verified, so no data can ever be lost or fully deleted.
What Does this Mean for Cybersecurity?
Since blockchain technology is decentralized, every user plays a role in verifying the shared data and therefore keeping the network secure. As such, blockchain is currently one of the best tools to prevent potential fraud and decrease the probability for breaches.
To penetrate or destroy a blockchain, cyber-criminals would have to destroy the information stored on every single user’s computer in the network, which is virtually impossible. Unless the hacker is able to simultaneously takeover an entire network of millions of computers, nodes (or undamaged computers) would be able to continue tracking and verifying the network’s data. This means that the data would not be completely lost, and users would still be able to access the affected information and make security changes.
Large blockchain networks with vast amounts of users therefore have a lower risk of being attacked by hackers because it is highly improbable that such a network would be easily penetrated—or penetrated at all.
The complex structure of blockchain provides users with the most secure form of sharing and storing their data online that technology experts have discovered thus far.
By allowing Internet users the option to verify and track their information online, blockchain takes power away from a central authority and gives it directly to individuals, which thereby results in increased cybersecurity for one’s personal data.
As blockchain continues to expand across industries, new developments in the coming months will confirm the technology’s value in increasing user cybersecurity and work in favor of augmenting data security.