Blockchain is a distributed ledger technology, a digital system for recording transactions and storing data in multiple places simultaneously, making them immutable and impossible to hack. Since it creates a decentralized distribution chain, each and every computer on the blockchain network has access to all the data and all copies of the data are updated and validated simultaneously.
In a blockchain network, there is no centralized authority managing the chain like a traditional system, but it is managed by computers belonging to the peer-to-peer network(P2P).
So what are the use cases of Blockchain?
Whenever we hear about blockchain the first thing that comes to our mind is Bitcoin or cryptocurrency maybe, but there is something more beyond that. Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies were the first use case of blockchain, but due to its decentralization and unable to tamper abilities it can have several other use cases beyond that.
Record Management: Usually, state and local governments are responsible for maintaining people’s records such as birth and death certificates, identity proofs, etc. But managing and maintaining these records can be difficult and may be at high risk of getting lost or damaged as most of them are in paper form.
However, it is possible to authenticate, validate and store them on the blockchain network.
There may be several digital options available to store the documents but they can be modified or copied easily and also their authenticity can be questioned. There are also high chances of documents being fake. So with the capability to overcome all these problems blockchain can be used for storing and maintaining documents.
Voting: In a traditional voting system where Electronic Voting Machines(EVMs) are used it is possible to tamper with the microchip and the voter will have no idea where his vote is cast it may be diverted into another candidate’s account and there will be no trackback of the vote.
But if the system is integrated with blockchain all the records will be maintained and the voted can get a receipt of the vote.
And there may be again several digital options and databases for this purpose but the database can be hacked and the number of votes can be altered. In another database, you get the CRUD option but in a blockchain, there is only an insert option. So it is almost impossible to hamper the vote data if integrated with blockchain.
Other use cases of blockchain can be:
Media: Media companies can use blockchain to manage and distribute content to their user. It can eliminate fraud, and copyrights issue and also reduces cost.
Cybersecurity: Blockchain is all about the immutability of data and its unhackable property. It provides end-to-end encryption, and privacy and removes the point of failure.
AI integration: Hard to believe but this combination can be mind-blowing. AI can be integrated with blockchain to enhance the above use cases. Blockchain is ideal for storing data but AI can help to process data. For eg: If blockchain is used for financial management AI can be used to analyze the data and its algorithm can help to make decisions to avoid fraud.
These are just the spoonful use cases there is a sea yet to be explored.