It is a recent technology that is popularized with Bitcoin. By representing an immutable record of transactions (without the mathematical possibility of altering its content), it was popularized as a book of accounts of a decentralized “cryptocurrency”.
Monetary units (or value deposits), they are only one of the multiple cases of use of this technology of increasing acceptance and use.
What is blockchain?
Blockchain, or “blockchain”, as indicates its name in English, it is a list with blocks of data, validated cryptographically before being inserted in it. Unlike a conventional database, blockchain does not reside in a central server, but each participant (or node) keeps an updated copy of the chain. Before adding new data or blocks to this chain, the content is validated among all the nodes, before synchronizing the copy of the rest of the participants. If the value of the new chain of blocks varies at the time of inserting a data, that operation is denied automatically, thanks to a consensus protocol.
When to use blockchain?
When we want maximum security of information integrity (without being directly responsible for this), that is, proof of non-modification.
In scenarios that have to be demonstrated in a cryptographic way (with legal validity), that the data has not been altered in any way by its owner. This makes sense as a guarantee:
- Before external clients or authorities (audit, administrations), to provide transparency to the process.
- In consortia of multiple participants outside the company , where everyone has access and power over the data.
Have a perfect traceability of who has done what with the data, and maintain the original values in an easily identifiable way, gives a reliability to the business process.