‘Big Four’ professional services firm Deloitte has published a report that takes a look at the potential uses of blockchain technology while arguing that its acceptance and wider adoption are fast approaching.  Introducing “the paper” [that we are offering below in its entirety]. Two of the firm’s partners say that while the tipping point for the technology may not occur until around 2027, Deloitte anticipates adoption “will occur much faster” as new applications emerge.

By Daniel Palmer

Deloitte anticipates a number of applications for blockchains across various industries. In a statement accompanying the paper, it cited some example use cases to illustrate the technology’s potential.

Deloitte UK Blockchain [Full Report]

Deloitte anticipates a number of applications for blockchains across various industries. In a statement accompanying the paper, it cited some example use cases to illustrate the technology’s potential.

In the banking and insurance sector, for instance, blockchains could be used to “strengthen and streamline” compliance checks on customers and reduce the risk of fraud, the paper contends.

In the media and entertainment industry too, it said, blockchains offer new business models to content owners, such as music artists. And in the public sector, there are opportunities to use blockchains for tax collection, to facilitate voting or as the official registry for government assets.

The firm suggested that, for these solutions to be adopted, it is “critical” to create a trusted environment for blockchain-based services, particularly when it comes to ensuring “robust and secure” authentication and identification.

Deloitte stated:

“By using technologies such as decentralised architecture, cryptography and digital signatures, blockchain has the potential to offer a high level of assurance, as well as adding some new and unique characteristics to identity management.”

Primer for industries

Deloitte said the paper aims to help leaders in different sectors “navigate the emerging opportunities offered by blockchain technology”.

It further discusses some of the challenges facing organizations as they start planning to adopt the technology.

Deloitte-report-diagram_800

With diagrams to assist newcomers to the technology, the paper kicks off with an easy-to-understand breakdown of how blockchains work, the different types that can be employed and a definition of what Deloitte believes constitutes a blockchain.

It then proceeds thought three main sections covering blockchain technology as the “Internet of Value-Exchange”, key challenges it faces, and what it will take to move from just an intriguing concept to real-world applications.

A final section breaks down the use cases across banking, insurance, the public sector and the media.

Deloitte revealed last summer that it is already seeking to use blockchain technology to automate client auditing and crowdsource consulting efforts, among other applications.


COMMENTS

NOTE:  The original and immediate comments were so important that we brought them to you here along with the paper.  Feel free to continue adding comments at the bottom of the page. All opinions welcome!

 

Here I am again, but there they are again too 🙂
The paper to which there is a reference is extremely poorly done in defining what a block chain is. Its defining concepts on p 7 show that one has totally missed the essence:
– digitally distributed across a number of computers: P2P torrent does that too.
– uses participants in the network to reach consensus: no, consensus is reached by largest proof-of-work (or by mutual trust in “private” chains, which begs the question!).
– uses cryptography and digital signatures to prove identity: so do certificates. And “proving identity” is a bit strong as an expression, as there’s no link with real-world identity at all.

– makes it hard to change historical records: *here we are* !! Proof of work !
– time-stamped: not more than any other way of writing a time.
– programmable: of course you can put code in the data block.

All these aspects miss the fact that a block chain is a (flat) Merkel tree of datablocks, and that consensus is reached by proof of work – until consensus is changed (including the ‘time stamps’).

There’s no “majority voting” thing which would be silly on a trustless network, where a Sybil attack could cripple any form of “majority” concept. The vote is proof of work and enough proof of work can alter unilaterally all previous consensus.

Hence, again, my question: how could one possibly lock up any serious value in a block chain without wasting about the same order of magnitude of value on proof of work ? With a crypto currency, the seigniorage pays for the proof of work, and the chain is not worth more than the market cap of the crypto currency, so there’s a perfect equilibrium between the incentive of putting in proof of work to “protect” (the seigniorage) and lack of incentive to put in much more proof of work (market cap, which is total seigniorage, is the highest meaningful incentive).

But if altering the block chain containing a contract worth 400 billion can be done by putting only 200 billion of proof of work on the table, there’s surely a strong incentive to “buy the new consensus” with 200 billion if it can bring in 400 billion. So the only way for such a chain to be secure is by having it spend at least 200 billion in proof of work in securing it.

Who is going to pay for that ? (for a currency, that was easy: the seigniorage) Are we really willing to waste 200 billion on proof of work to have that contract “graved in stone” ?

 

All these applications can be built on the basis of Factom Project.

Not much point unless Blockstream Core or somebody else manages to increase the 1MB block size. Presently there is barely enough capacity for current usage let alone any new users or applications. Or switch to another coin which has bigger max block size ?