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Author Topic: Is blockchain really needed for security?  (Read 107 times)
monopsony
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August 17, 2018, 01:56:38 AM
 #1

I get that blockchains enable immutable data to be recorded, so that I suppose hackers can't delete or write over data on the block.
But what are the other benefits of blockchain for security? I mean, you could make a distributed secure database that doesn't need blockchain right?
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August 17, 2018, 03:39:52 AM
 #2

Bitcoin's uses blockchain to keep track of bitcoin ledger in real-time. I don't think there's any other method for doing it, While keeping the system with no need for a central authority to determine what time is it and what has written on the ledger until now.

So what does it mean.

Imagine your bitcoin node stops working at some time for one day. And the next time it starts. It knows the ledger until yesterday. There's a network of nodes running on the internet. It tries to connect to one or more. And ask what happened. You can't trust strangers. So bitcoin's blockchain is here to help.
 
The function time is proof-of-work. It's designed to find a block every 10minutes. Which has a special feature, It can rollback in time (It's very UN-efficient, 51% attack can be done with this feature).
Each block contains a set of valid transactions. By attaching the previous block (-10min) to new block with proof-of-work function. blockchain is formed.

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August 17, 2018, 05:02:34 AM
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 #3

I get that blockchains enable immutable data to be recorded, so that I suppose hackers can't delete or write over data on the block.
But what are the other benefits of blockchain for security? I mean, you could make a distributed secure database that doesn't need blockchain right?

You can make a "distributed secure database" (they already exist), but you can't make one in an environment where you don't trust the participants. The advantage of a blockchain is that anyone can participate.

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August 17, 2018, 10:00:03 AM
 #4

I get that blockchains enable immutable data to be recorded, so that I suppose hackers can't delete or write over data on the block.
But what are the other benefits of blockchain for security? I mean, you could make a distributed secure database that doesn't need blockchain right?

You can make a "distributed secure database" (they already exist), but you can't make one in an environment where you don't trust the participants. The advantage of a blockchain is that anyone can participate.

Precisely. It all depends on the use case.

Blockchains shine when it comes to storing transactional data in a public ledger that anyone can read / write to, ie. an adversarial environment. If you are operating within a trusted environment, ie. one where the permission levels of each user is centrally administered (eg. an internal company database) other solutions will fit the bill much better.

Being a sort of distributed database is not what makes blockchains special, it's that it allows full public read and write access while remaining reasonably secure.

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August 17, 2018, 05:51:47 PM
 #5

I get that blockchains enable immutable data to be recorded, so that I suppose hackers can't delete or write over data on the block.
But what are the other benefits of blockchain for security? I mean, you could make a distributed secure database that doesn't need blockchain right?

Two major factors that ensure security are control and accessibility and not necessarily the immutable ability of the data itself because when those two are compromised the immutability can no longer be trusted and that is what makes blockchain more beneficial than databases.

On control, for database, it either needs to be centralised in a location no matter how decentralised the model that is being practiced. For example Google databases might be spread across the world but still will be in a location that could be compromised and control in the hands of those who are in charge. But for blockchain this is eliminated as control is in the hands of several individuals which means control cannot be abused for whatever purpose.

The accessibility is the intriguing part in that you don't need approval of the initiator of the transaction or data to see and verify if its there. Today, for anybody to get the information about your balance they either need your express approval or court warrant to do that but for blockchain, its just to easy and could not be doctored as several people will be performing the check without approval.

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August 17, 2018, 07:25:09 PM
 #6

For decentralized/trustless distributed database, blockchain is good solution. But there's other technology such as DAG, BitTorrent Protocol and technology that IPFS use, even though there are more cons than pros in this case IMO.
However the consensus method/P2P protocol is the one which makes blockchain is secure/immutable.

So, blockchain isn't really needed for security, even though it's good option for decentralized/trustless distributed database.

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August 19, 2018, 02:39:03 AM
 #7

I get that blockchains enable immutable data to be recorded, so that I suppose hackers can't delete or write over data on the block.
But what are the other benefits of blockchain for security? I mean, you could make a distributed secure database that doesn't need blockchain right?

What make from blockchain a secure infrastructure is the management from double spends. As we know you can doublespend the same coin, but only one of them will confirm, and that's what make the chain legit.

Some months ago in Mexico was a crazy hack to banks, and what the hacker did was a double spend with the SPEI system. The problem about that hack was that both transactions confirm letting the hacker create money from no where. That represent a $15 millions lost for banks and that would never happen with blockchain.

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August 19, 2018, 11:38:32 AM
 #8

I mean, you could make a distributed secure database that doesn't need blockchain right?

You could make a distributed secure database.
But you wouldn't be able to create a distributed secure trustless database with no one in control of and no single point of failure.

The blockchain itself does not secure anything.
It is the combination of multiple technologies which makes the use of a blockchain very beneficial. Especially for a lot of people extensively distributed.
A single company with a few central buildings wouldn't benefit from a blockchain in that way.

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August 19, 2018, 01:54:43 PM
 #9

Blockchain's purpose is not only about security but also about transparency of the recorded transaction. The transparency of each recorded transaction is one of the best things this technology has given to us as it is like a irreversible public ledger. This technology is also inexpensive to audit and will take less time to verify unlike having your own "secure database" where you still need to worry about other costs not to mention its system reliability might not be good. That is why a lot of companies are already exploiting the idea of this blockchain technology and turning them into patented technologies like how Walmart successfully patented the blockchain technology on a system for storing medical records.

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August 19, 2018, 03:11:31 PM
 #10

Blockchain's purpose is not only about security but also about transparency of the recorded transaction. The transparency of each recorded transaction is one of the best things this technology has given to us as it is like a irreversible public ledger. This technology is also inexpensive to audit and will take less time to verify unlike having your own "secure database" where you still need to worry about other costs not to mention its system reliability might not be good. That is why a lot of companies are already exploiting the idea of this blockchain technology and turning them into patented technologies like how Walmart successfully patented the blockchain technology on a system for storing medical records.

but it definitely  could be some problems with audit in some countries right?
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