Blockchain technology presents numerous possibilities for change and improvements in various financial, technical, and societal realms. At present, the economy doesn’t flourish upon oil or gas but on data. Data is the real king of our economy. Whether it is the US Presidential Elections or Yahoo email accounts being targeted by hackers, the world has become more sensitive about protecting data.
Looking at the cybersecurity sector, Blockchain can protect data and create opportunities that have not yet been envisioned. The technology has created its own space and it has become a priority for industry leaders to understand how it can transform their business model and value chain. As reported by Bloomberg, Blockchain technology received a capital investment of over $1 billion in 2016 alone from financial and technical organizations.
Understanding the change
The advent of the Internet and advancement in technology, trade, finance and the globalization of the supply chain has resulted in new business models and revenue streams for organizations. Yet these developments and dependency on technology and the internet has created new gaps and opened gates for cyber attackers to exploit. Cyber-attacks have become more frequent, targeted and complex.
Cybercriminals try to steal valuable information through the use of advanced ransomware techniques or by disrupting overall business operations through Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks. In October 2016, one of the world’s biggest DNS provider Dyn suffered a major DDoS attack that disrupted the service of several high traffic websites like Twitter, Netflix, and Spotify.
Blockchain and Cybersecurity
Recently, NASA implemented Blockchain technology to strengthen cybersecurity and prevent denial of service and other attacks on air traffic services. Blockchain and its underlying characteristics of immutability, transparency, auditability, data encryption & operational resilience can prevent cyber fraud and data tampering. With all its inherent features Blockchain is emerging as a viable technology to help businesses and other government and non-government organizations improve cyber defense.
Use-case of Blockchain in Cybersecurity-
Decentralized Data Storage Solutions: The centralized databases maintained by businesses containing sensitive and valuable data of customers are prime attractions for hackers. Blockchain-based decentralized storage solutions minimize the risk of breach and ensure hackers don’t have centralized access and access to entire repositories in the case of a breach.
On a blockchain network, each node is responsible for verifying the data that is shared and maintained as users can maintain their data on the computers in their network. This ensures that the network chain doesn’t collapse, existing data isn’t removed and any attempt to tamper the data is blocked immediately.
A trustless cybersecurity community: False positives have scaled to become a significant selling point for the security vendors that determines the accuracy rate and effectiveness of security solutions. Blockchain maintains immutable and timestamped records, therefore, members on the network can verify threats via consensus.
The complete encryption used on the network ensures that data as a whole or in part is not accessible to any wrongful person or organization while in transit. The use of distributed public key infrastructure for authenticating devices and users would ensure that there is no human intervention for authentication.
Transparency for security vendors and network users: A blockchain-enabled network maintains complete transparency as every transaction on such a network is timestamped, digitally signed and cryptographically secure. The participants of the network have access to trace back any transaction and locate the corresponding party on the blockchain through their public address using a block explorer.
Safer DNS and Diminished DDOS attacks: DNS is largely centralized, thus an easy target for malicious hackers. The centralized DNS attack paired with DDOS attack creates a gateway for hackers to cash websites, route people to scam websites, make original websites unavailable or render them utterly unusable for long. A blockchain-based system decentralized the entire network and removes that one single vulnerable target which can be compromised. The implementation of blockchain would completely decentralize DNS as domain information would be immutable on a distributed ledger while the connections would be powered by smart contracts.
A transparent Cybersecurity Community
Blockchain can make the entire cybersecurity space including security vendors and governments transparent, thus ensuring the privacy and security of end-user. The technology would play a crucial role in making systems invulnerable to hackers and make networks abide by cybersecurity standards and regulations. The confidentiality, non-repudiation, data integrity, data availability and immutability of blockchain are going to revolutionize the technical infrastructure of cybersecurity.