Do you Blockchain have the potential to revolutionize not just businesses but society also? Most people associate blockchain technology with Bitcoin and financial services only. However, from healthcare to ride-sharing, this innovative technology is transforming society. It was just a few years ago that the blockchain was meant for cryptocurrencies and financial institutions only. But lately, blockchain is changing and impacting other aspects of society also.
Blockchain gained popularity and mainstream attention due to the world’s most famous cryptocurrency- Bitcoin. This relatively new technology was introduced with the aim to ease and secure financial transactions. However, blockchain was quick to move beyond bitcoin and enter various services and industrial sectors. It is believed that blockchain holds immense potential for business, society and every individual. If you’re now wondering how blockchain will transform the society, you first need to understand this technology and how it works. So, keep reading!
What Is Blockchain?
As you might already know, Blockchain is the technology behind Bitcoin. The aim of developing this technology was to create the first completely digital and secure virtual currency. In regard to Bitcoin and other digital currencies, blockchain is a type of distributed ledger for recording bitcoin transactions that are grouped into blocks. In a broader sense, blockchain is an open and public online database that records and exchanges value-based transactions. The public blockchain exists all over the world and is not controlled by any centralized authority. It uses mathematical algorithms and cryptography to create a consensus for securely verifying every transaction.
One of the best features of this tech is its ability to eliminate chances of fraud, hacking, and third-party interference. Blockchain can store person-to-person transactional history in blocks that cannot be altered. The computers over the network create a consensus to protect and verify every transaction. Each transactional block is timestamp in chronological order to makes blockchain a reliable and secure platform. So, blockchain is a distributed ledger shared via a peer-to-peer network.
How Blockchain Can Transform the Society
Banks, insurance companies, and financial institutions were the first to explore the potential applications of blockchain. But over the years, blockchain technology has moved much beyond bitcoin and financial sector. It is expected to transform various markets and industrial sectors by facilitating the transactions. Here are some blockchain applications that are going to transform society.
- Blockchain Identity
A major concern of people these days is protecting their identity from spammers and marketing schemes. This is where blockchain can help in securing your identity by encrypting it. An example of digital identity is the digital passport launched by Github in 2014. It allows people to take their picture and stamp it with an encoded public and private key to identify them. Likewise, blockchain can also store crucial documents like birth, death, and wedding certificates digitally. These documents are crucial to avail all sorts of citizen privileges like voting, working, and citizenship. Blockchain can encrypt crucial documents like your birth and death certification, as well as driver’s license and identity cards to eliminate the need for physical identification. This blockchain application, if put to use can help in creating one digital ID for signing up at any registrar.
- Reforming Elections
In every democratic country, a free and fair election is of utmost importance. However, the existing voting system of many countries is still not efficient to ensure fairness and anonymity. This is where blockchain can transform the system by offering immutability and safety in local and national elections. If votes are recorded on the blockchain, it’s possible to achieve faster and fair elections. In a democracy, the vote of every citizen is crucial. Citizens elect their candidates who form the government. Blockchain can bring more efficiency in this system by providing a secure identity of each voter. This will help in ensuring that votes were not cast twice or by wrong means. It can also speed up the process by providing an instant count of the vote. Also, it will be possible to cast votes using your phones. Voting over blockchain means no physical locations or paper ballots are required which will save elections cost. In short, blockchain can help in making the election process fair, quick, and cost-effective.
What if all of your medical information is stored in a central database? Patients, as well as doctors, can benefit immensely from the blockchain technology. If the medical records like prescriptions and testing reports are recorded over blockchain, it would be easy for hospitals to get access to information quickly. The centralization of medical information can provide better health care management. It can be used for supervising drugs, regulation compliance, sharing testing results, and managing healthcare supplies. Many hospitals and other healthcare organizations are already creating a centralized and secure database to store medical records and share them only with authorized doctors and patients. The information like surgeries receipts can also be shared with insurance providers for a quick approval. All this can help in providing the best possible treatment to the patients.
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