IoT is everywhere today and it can benefit from collaboration with another disruptive technology: blockchain. Here, we explore how IoT and blockchain technologies can work together to form some kind of synergy.
One of the most Ubiquitous technologies today, the internet of things or IoT continues to be adopted by an increasing number of people each day. According to Gartner—an American research and advisory firm, there were over eight billion connected devices in use at the end of 2017—a 31% increase from the previous year and this trend is expected to continue in the future as well, with connected devices expected to reach twenty billion by the end of the 2020.
Another innovative technology making a name for itself is blockchain, the distributed ledger technology supporting bitcoin and other-cryptocurrencies. It is being touted in many quarters as an innovation that will change how we transact, build trust and transfer value. Many technology experts believe that collaboration between the two disruptive technologies: IoT and Blockchain, will not only herald us into a new era of technology and innovation but will also help deliver enhanced services securely.
Security is the perhaps the biggest advantage of using blockchain technology together with IoT. So, what is it that makes blockchain so secure? The answer is in its architecture. In a blockchain network, each user is governed by a private key and a public key. Upon the initiation of a transaction, the user broadcasts an encrypted message in the network using their private key. The message spreads, reaching members of the network who can decrypt it using their public key.
A digital signature of sorts, the encrypted message is arranged with a probability of two× 160 times. The output appears as follows:
This makes it virtually impossible for anyone to trace the information of the user or vandalize the stored data. Passing from node to node, the signature helps to check any fraud or attempt to breach data in case there is disagreement regarding an order.
What IoT and Blockchain Collaboration Can Help Achieve
IoT comprises of connected devices that are used every day such as vehicles, wearable tech, buildings, physical devices, etc. With embedded electronics, software and sensors allowing them to send and receive data. This allows us to make intelligent decisions. An enabler of change, IoT can benefit in the following areas by collaborating with blockchain technology:
Collaboration between blockchain and IoT can enable automation of large scale remote systems management. This can potentially increase efficiency and reduce the overall costs.
By enabling the deployment of remote sensors, IoT allows almost anything to be measured. Alongside smart IoT solutions, blockchain technology can be used to ensure that the results are transparent and accessible to the public.
In times of connected, smart devices that gather information about us and share it with the world, allowing people to effectively control and manage their identity in the digital space is crucial. By allowing people to opt in or out of providing access to personal information, blockchain can help to secure the information of people in the IoT space. This is great news for all involved.