Blockchain Technology for CIO

By: Pallav Kumar, Senior Consultant at GlobalLogic

With the digital revolution bringing in new and fundamentally powerful platforms for businesses, the blockchain technology is now at the core of the biggest change and innovation in the field of technology. It is termed as one of the most and upcoming technology for the enterprise business and CIOs specifically.

The CIO, who is the decision maker of the company’s information and technology needs has brought a unique and powerful phenomenon which is aimed to revolutionize the business model of an enterprise called the Blockchain.

More and more companies are now contemplating ways to adopt these technologies to its advantage and transform their operations and create new revenue opportunities. The board of directors (B of D) which are bounded by the conventional regulations are now curious to see the potential of new technologies which will impact the top-line growth and help decrease business risk.

Blockchain is a specific type of distributed ledger database that maintains a continuously growing list of transaction records ordered & verified into blocks with various protections against tampering and revision through cryptographic security and network validation. It not only acts a catalyst for business model but also is required for the process change across the enterprise. It has the potential to impact the enterprise profoundly regardless of the industry.

The various advantages and facets for this technology are as follows: –
1.Immutable – the time stamped records are irreversible & can’t be altered
2.Secure – the technology is secured since it is individually encrypted
3. Programmable – can be programmed accordingly to follow a particular business logic
4.Distributed – There isn’t any central authority in it. Each interconnected member has a copy of its own
5.Consensus – There is a protocol which requires to reach to an agreement

The advocates of the Blockchain technology are steadily increasing and are fostering discussions & research activities on potential areas of its application ranging from financial institutions to a music industry. What we need is a differentiated approach to elaborate on the prospective impact on the industry segment’s research activities for potential areas of application. The blockchain style of computing and its ability to automate the trust process helps significantly in offering the clients products “faster” and delivering them “more securely” which in turn enhances the cross-industry coordination.

For the CIO:
The CIO perceives the technology as
1. A new technological institution that will change the way how we exchange values
2. A decentralized database/registry of assets and transactions
3. A process which will lower uncertainty, and transform the economic systems

What CIOs can do?
While the technology has proven to be successful for the enterprise business, the CIO’s however, need to take the consumer’s perspective into consideration as well. What consumers today need are secure solutions that are fast, traceable, and easy to use. In a world which is driven by blockchain, consumers want to monetize their own data to derive greater value and satisfaction across different levels of technical experience and expertise. Therefore, the solutions need to be presented in a spontaneous format to achieve to appeal to the mass audience and encourage its widespread adoption.

Embracing the real-world implementations and fostering industry partnerships solutions has to surpass the hurdles of:
– Performance and scalability
– Regulatory and legal framework
– Privacy and confidentiality

A strategic approach is required to identify the opportunities where this distributed ledger technology can make a difference, develop explicit hypotheses and proceed to development in an iterative fashion. The blockchain technology is nothing short of a revolution and is definitely here to stay. The permanence it brings to the table safely minimizes the scope of hacking and misuse as “There is nothing to hack, no place to go, no trust to place or lose faith in; it is simply there.”

For blockchain technology to become a reality in practice, its early adopters and users need to play an instrumental role and becomes the advocates. There are a zillion projects piloted by countries as well as companies around the world which can benefit exponentially from this technology. The need is for the companies’ CIO’s to relook at their enterprise architecture, security standards, and backup capabilities and introduce the technology while ensuring that the business continuity is on the cards.

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