Since Bitcoin’s first block;”genesis block”, was first mined, the blockchain technology has been undervalued. However, indicators derived from the current market status denote that the future of this innovative technology is quite promising. There are tens of financial uses of the blockchain, yet the most appealing non-financial use of this technology is its application to maximize the security of the Internet of Things (IoT).
The blockchain can offer a myriad of applications that can promote the security of the IoT. Linking the blockchain technology to the IoT can open the door to a whole new world of inventions. The blockchain technology can be utilized to investigate the history of various devices connected to the IoT. Furthermore, it can be utilized to execute and confirm transactions taking place between various devices connected across the IoT. This can help in taking IoT to a whole new level of maturing independence via using the public ledger technology to record all data exchange operations among devices, human users and services connected via the IoT.
How Can The Blockchain Secure Connection Across the IoT?
IoT was innovated to promote connectivity among all forms of smart devices. You can think of it as a central entity that stores info related to any given device that can connect to the IoT , from the smart lights in your place to autonomous cars that are already roaming the roads of some of the world’s cities. So, if a hacker takes control of devices connected to the IoT, the consequences can be disastrous.
The blockchain technology can provide means for maximizing security on the IoT. Although the blockchain protocol was initially innovated to support a cryptocurrency; bitcoin, the permanence and transparency provided by the blockchain model can provide a secure encrypted means for authentication of connections among various smart devices on the IoT. Technically speaking, the archiving integrity provided by the blokchain model can be utilized by many industries outside the financial sector.
The blockchain can function as a network that confirms and records all device connections across the IoT, which can prevent malicious attacks by hackers who may try to fake the identity of another device in an attempt to phish personal data or ignite some other form of chaos. The blockchain protocol will secure the connection between any given two smart devices on the IoT via the SHA-256 encryption algorithm without having to go through any central or third parties, which would render malicious attacks far more difficult to be successfully executed.
Utilizing the blockchain protocol will enable users to create an “identity chain” to facilitate synchronization of connection of various smart devices. Being a decentralized public ledger, the blockchain will prevent censorship that can be imposed by central third parties, so identities of various devices on a given identity chain will be permanently recorded and secured. SHA-256 cryptography will only allow validated smart devices to connect to others on an identity chain. The configuration of each and every device will be recorded onto the blockchain which would prevent any attempt of counterfeiting records and device IDs.
Deploying the blockchain technology to the IoT will require some time to be accomplished and the journey has just started as many IoT industry leaders have announced that they will begin testing the use of the blockchain protocol during 2017, especially IBM via its ADEPT platform which was announced in 2015, as a research project for using the peer-to-peer blockchain protocol for securing IoT connections. ADEPT, or Autonomous Decentralized Peer-to-Peer Telemetry, is a proof-of-concept platform that is comprised of three elements; Ethereum, Bittorrent and Telehash. IBM is currently working with Samsung to utilize ADEPT’s proof-of-concept in the process of connection authentication across the IoT.
The IoT industry is still in its infancy, yet it has a remarkable potential to exhibit great popularity during the upcoming few years. As the IoT is continuously proving that it can connect almost every aspect of one’s life, the level of security provided by this innovation is unarguable. Security concerns are heightening in the face of rapid advancement of hacking techniques. The blockchain technology represents an ideal solution that can maximize the security of connections between devices across the IoT.