Blockchain technology is regarded as a revolutionary technology mainly used in cryptocurrency.
It began as a mechanism to support Bitcoin (CRYPTO:BTC) to address the double-spending problem linked with digital currencies. Satoshi Nakamoto solved this issue by creating an immutable ledger of transactions that connect blocks of data with digital cryptography.
In short, a blockchain is a database where you can put more information, although you cannot remove it.
A blockchain can store anything from money to insurance claims or even shares of real estate.
The data is spread out and kept in an expansive network of computers called nodes, which means that the system is appropriately distributed.
Though people primarily associate blockchain technology with cryptocurrency, it has many practical applications.
Here are seven of them:
1. Financial Exchanges
Numerous companies have begun offering decentralised cryptocurrency exchanges over the last few years.
Blockchain facilitates these exchanges and paves the way for faster, cheaper transactions.
Additionally, a decentralised exchange does not need investors to store their assets with a centralised authority, which means they can enjoy more control and security.
Although blockchain-based deals are primarily done in cryptocurrency, they can also be applied to traditional investments.
Blockchain technology makes it possible to use smart contracts, which offer more transparency for insurance providers and customers.
You can record all claims on a blockchain, preventing customers from successfully making duplicate claims for the same occurrence.
Smart contracts can also expedite the process for claimants, enabling them to receive payments faster.
3. Secure Personal Information
Important identifying data like your Social Security number and date of birth on a public ledger, like a blockchain, may offer more security than current systems prone to hacks.
You can use blockchain technology to secure access to personal information while enhancing access for those who need it in industries like finance, education, travel, and healthcare.
Since blockchain can hold personal identity information, that opens the potential of using it to vote.
Blockchain technology can ensure that nobody votes twice, that only eligible voters can vote, and that no one can tamper with votes.
In countries with severe problems with election integrity, blockchain could potentially be a solution to bring faith back to the election process.
It can also improve access to voting since it will become simpler to vote by pressing only a few buttons on your smartphone. It will also drastically decrease the cost of running an election.
Blockchain technology is also handy for lenders, allowing them to carry out collateralised loans through smart contracts built on blockchain.
The technology enables specific events to trigger processes instantly, like a margin call, service payment, and full repayment of the loan.
Loan processing then becomes faster and more affordable, allowing lenders to offer more attractive rates.
6. Artist Royalties
Leveraging blockchain technology to monitor music and film files spread over the Internet can ensure that artists are paid for their creations.
Blockchain technology was invented to prevent the same file from existing in more than one place, so it can substantially help fight against piracy.
Additionally, companies can use a blockchain to trace playbacks on streaming services and provide a smart contract to send out payments, offering more transparency and guaranteeing that artists will receive their due income.
7. Government Benefits
Lastly, since blockchain technology can store digital identities, it will become easier for government agencies to administer benefits like welfare programs, Social Security, and more. Blockchain technology can vastly decrease instances of fraud and operation costs.
Furthermore, beneficiaries can receive their funds faster since blockchain technology relies on digital disbursement, reducing waiting times.
Blockchain technology was initially designed to support Bitcoin, but it has limitless potential in improving various services. With so many beneficial applications of Blockchain technology, it can transform current systems and make them exponentially more efficient.
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