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Topic :   Block-chain Technology: Beyond the Crypto-currency

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Block-chain is relatively new; therefore, a representative research sample is presented that spans over the last couple of years from the earlier literature addressing the field. The different usage types of Block-chain, as well as the digital ledger methods, applications, challenges privacy, and security issues, are examined. The technology constitutes two distinct components including block and transaction. Block refers to the collection of data, transaction recording, as well as other related details such as the creation of timestamp, correct sequence, et cetera. Blockchain which is the digital technology fundamental for crypto-currency has managed to bring forth a novel revolution through the provision of a mechanism that can be used for peer-to-peer transactions (P2P). The blockchain is a globally accepted ledger that is capable of achieving numerous new applications beyond transaction verification. Bitcoin that is progressively gaining awareness around the world is a vital example of Blockchain in practice. The block-chain technology is still at the stage of building up and is expected to be full-blown in the next few years.



The predominant goal of this proposal is to outline the literature on the functionality of Block-chain and other techniques of the digital ledger in several different spheres of influence beyond its use to crypto-currency and to come up with an appropriate conclusion. The technology of block-chain is relatively new; therefore, a representative research sample is presented that spans over the last couple of years from the earlier literature addressing the field. The different usage types of Block-chain, as well as the digital ledger methods, applications, challenges privacy, and security issues, are examined. However, the main focus of this proposal is to determine the most auspicious for future application of Block-chain beyond crypto-currency.

Block-chain is the technology that facilitates the system of Bitcoin crypto-currency, which is also regarded to be important in the formation of the backbone that guarantees privacy and security of several applications in different areas such as the eco-system of the Internet of Things. The block-chain technology has also been successfully applied in the industrial and the educational sectors (Pilkington, 2016). A Proof-of-Work, which is a mathematical challenge, guarantees the security of the chain-block by maintaining the transactions of the digital ledger that are not alterable in any way. Also, block-chain employs utilize a public key that is changeable and records the identity all the users while maintaining their privacy. The adaptation of block-chain technology has also been successfully implemented in different non-monetary systems including decentralized message, online voting, clouds distribution and storage systems, healthcare, proof-of-location (Chatterjee, & Chatterjee, 2017). Several research projects and articles are reviewed to establish the implementation if block-chain for identity and security enhancement, related challenges as well as the appropriate solutions for block-chain based security structures. The area of knowledge described in the research includes the digital ledger realm, especially the block-chain and crypto-currency.


Fundamentals of Block-chain Technology

This section offers a brief description of the fundamental aspects of the block-chain technology. The technology constitutes two distinct components including block and transaction. Block refers to the collection of data, transaction recording, as well as other related details such as the creation of timestamp, correct sequence, et cetera. On the other hand, the transaction is the triggered actions by the participants in the block-chain.

Block-chain can be either private or public, depending on its usability scope. When a block-chain is made public, it allows all the users write and read permissions as is with the access of Bitcoin. However, other types of public block-chains also offer single permission, which is either to write or read depending on the type of participants. On the other hand, access is only limited to the trusted few in private block-chain. This is done with the intentions of enhancing security and to conceal the participants’ personal details. The private block-chain is mostly used in healthcare facilities and other governmental institutions where privacy is a priority.

The public implementation if the block-chain technology makes the primary benefit of the system. The ability of every participant to make entries or updates or evaluate the transaction records creates accuracy and allows verifications and authorization of a transaction by all the participants. In most cases, the data remains unchanged, and in case of alteration, the changes are verifiable by all participants. However, the block-chain data are encrypted using a unique key and can only be interpreted by experts.

In addition, the decentralized nature of the block-chain technology is also a significant advantage of the system. This implies that data, associated blocks, or transactions are not stored in any single device, but are preferably distributed throughout the network among the participants supporting the block-chain (Crosby et al. 2016). Also, no single authority is responsible for authorization of transactions, neither are there specified rules that guide the operations, apart from the participant’s consensus. Last but not least, the eco-system of the block-chain, as well as the overall security, is also an added advantage of the system. Since the earlier blocks are already public and distributed, they can never be changed, and only the new blocks can be appended.

The block-chain technology encourages transparency since all the transactions must be approved by all the participants within a given block-chain ecosystem. The participants are required to use a given algorithm to verify and validate such transactions. Each block-chain ecosystem has its definition of what is considered to be valid for a trade.

Figure 1: Blockchain Technology Concept (Pilkington, 2016)



Application of Block-chain Beyond Crypto-currency

Even though the internet is known for its greatness in aiding all spheres of contemporary digital lives, it is immensely flawed in some ways including inadequate or lack of privacy and security. These flaws have been majorly experienced in the fields of e-commerce as well as Fintech. Blockchain which is the digital technology fundamental for crypto-currency has managed to bring forth a novel revolution through the provision of a mechanism that can be used for peer-to-peer transactions (P2P). This mechanism has been enabled to work without the intervention of any intermediaries like commercial banks (Pilkington, 2016). Blockchain can validate all relevant transactions and also safeguard stable and permanent records of the information; while ascertaining that all the users’ credentials and identification data are kept incognito.

Therefore, the technology ensures that all the personal data of the users are impounded while the system substantiates all the requested transactions. This function is further accomplished through reconciliation of mass collaborations through the accumulation of all sales in the computer coded digital ledger. Therefore, application of Blockchain as well as other similarly functional crypto-currency tools does not require an intermediate or users trusting each other. The trust is thereby patented in the decentralized network of the Blockchain system. Blockchain can hence be referred to as the “Trust Machine” of the ideal paradigm (Pilkington, 2016).

Bitcoin is an outstanding example of Blockchain in practice. Blockchain, being a new revolution in the computing world, is further capable of allowing limitless applications.These applications are including storage as well as verification of legal documentation such as certificates and title deeds, IoT, cloud, healthcare data and many more (Crosby et al. 2016) asserts that Blockchain is a globally accepted ledger that is capable of achieving numerous new applications beyond transaction verification. For instance, the technology is immensely applied in smart deeds, governmental services, autonomous and decentralized organizations.

Also, it is applicable in the cloud environment (Ølnes, Ubacht, & Janssen, 2017). In this perspective, the historical background in the generation of the cloud data objects, as well as its successive functionality performed thereupon, are often recorded through the data structure system known as the ‘data provenance’ which is an essential kind of the cloud metadata. Therefore, this perspective is essential in providing total security to the significant data provenance to ensure data privacy and confidentiality, accountability, viability, and forensics. Ølnes, Ubacht, and Janssen, (2017) describe the architecture of a Blockchain-based cloud data provenance, and how users trust it. ‘ProvChain’ is highly decentralized and meets the requirements of many users, thus promoting the trust. Consequently, adoption of Blockchain in a data cloud environment is vital in providing reliable protection against data records that may be altered, therefore promoting enhanced transparency, and also, further accountability of data. Furthermore, trustworthiness, accountability privacy, and provenance data value are significantly increased.

Also in the environment of IoT, most communications are achieved through machine-to-machine interactions (M2M). This aspect establishes trust issues among the communicating machines. The challenge has not been tackled to completion by the IoT technology. Nonetheless, Blockchain can be used as a catalyst in this situation through the promotion of advanced security, privacy, reliability as well as scalability of the systems (Crosby et al. 2016). This is accomplished through the deployment of the Blockchain technology with a command to track man devices that may be connected to the IoT environment, and also utilized to enhance and coordinate processing transactions. Application of the Blockchain in the ecosystem of IoT is also bound to heighten data reliability through axing the failure point referred to as the SPF (Single Point of Failure). The integrated cryptographic algorithms useful in block data encryption and technique hashing are significant in providing enhanced security. On the other hand, this process may be liable to increased processing power demands, which often lack in the IoT devices. This limitation requires further detailed research.

According to Wright, and De Filippi, (2015) the application of the Blockchain technology is bound to promote a total overhaul of the digital economy. Ascertaining and maintenance of trust is always the primary concern of this technological application. Further, Blockchain has its applicability in gathering chronological as well as sequence data related to transactions. This applicability is often evident in the vast networked systems used for time-stamping. For instance, NASDAQ implements the ‘Linq Blockchain’ in recording the private transactions of securities. Also, the U.S based DTCC works together with Axoni to perform financial settlement services like swaps and post-trade matters. Furthermore, regulators have also shown interest in the ability of Blockchain to promote privacy, traceability as well as real-time transactions monitoring.


Future of Block-chain

According to Wright, and De Filippi, (2015), the block-chain technology is still at the stage of building up and is expected to be full-blown in the next five years. Since the world is widely adopting the technology as well as the increased applications beyond cryptocurrency, the classification and the use of block-chain is projected to reach maturity in five to ten years. The technology has a better potential to empower the economies and citizens, especially in developing countries. What needs to be done is the creation of awareness and encouraging the adaptation of e-governance to facilitate easy management and transfer of assets and other precious commodities such as silver, diamond, gold, and financial inclusion.



The use of block-chain technology has expanded beyond its application for Bitcoin transaction and generations. The characteristics if its privacy, security, inherent data derivation,

Traceability, as well as time-stamping, has allowed its adoption extensively beyond the initial area of applications. The block-chain technology is expected to take over the financial system and other applications in the near future.


Pilkington, M. (2016). 11 Blockchain technology: principles and applications. Research handbook on digital transformations, 225.

Wright, A., & De Filippi, P. (2015). Decentralized blockchain technology and the rise of lex cryptocurrecney.

Crosby, M., Pattanayak, P., Verma, S., & Kalyanaraman, V. (2016). Blockchain technology: Beyond bitcoin. Applied Innovation2, 6-10.

Ølnes, S., Ubacht, J., & Janssen, M. (2017). Blockchain in government: Benefits and implications of distributed ledger technology for information sharing.

Chatterjee, R., & Chatterjee, R. (2017, October). An Overview of the Emerging Technology: Blockchain. In Computational Intelligence and Networks (CINE), 2017 3rd International Conference on (pp. 126-127). IEEE.




Christophe Bassono

Literature Survey Proposal

CYBR-4360 Foundation of IA

UNO- Fall 2018

Literature Survey Proposal

Topic: Block-chain Technology: Beyond Application in the Crypto-currency

Topic area and emerging issue

The literature review topic area has been designated to blockchain technology: beyond

application in the crypto-currency. This is since there seem to be issued in this area of security in

the online world and blockchain can provide the solution to various areas beyond the sphere of

using this application for crypto-currency. Thus, this topic is highly relevant.

Key Words

The key search words that are being used to conduct the research for this topic include

the following selections and more may be added as the research continues. Thus, the keywords

respectively are as follows: emerging issues in cybersecurity in relation to the blockchain,

protection of transactions in various industries with blockchain usage, how can blockchain

protect your company, what can blockchain be used for, security issues that blockchain can solve

and risks involved regarding the application of blockchain for various industries.

Motivation and background

This is an underdeveloped realm regarding the application of blockchain beyond the

aspect of usage for crypto-currency. And there have been cyber attacks on various industries,

including various government agencies being hacked. Thus, the investigation of blockchain

application for other industries does make sense. More security can be added to protect

industries from malicious hackers.

Purpose and whom this will benefit

This study is needed to help others to understand how blockchain can be applied to

provide cybersecurity beyond the realm of using it for crypto-currency application. This will

benefit those who have industries that have been attacked previously. This will help those who

are venturing into new businesses. This will help those who want to protect their current business

as a manner of prevention, though they have not been attacked yet. This information can be

applied to almost all industries. With this being the case, this is a highly valuable study.

Expectations and time frame

I expect to find more information on this topic to aid in understanding more precisely the

types of industries that are using it and the ones that it can yet be applied to. The successes and

the risks will be uncovered. I suspect there is not as much information in this area of study as

there is in comparison to blockchain being applied to crypto-currency. Thus, the time frame that



will be dedicated to this research and project will be two weeks. I believe this will provide a

good foundation for a solid report.

Hence, the literature review will commence with an explanation of what block chain is to

provide a foundation for this study, as the study will not make sense without a comprehension of

the basics of the blockchain. It will also be explained how blockchain is a stronger protection

solution than other protection solutions that give it an advantage to keeping hackers out, such as

the fact that this application is not able to be manipulated and controlled by only one designated

mastermind Moreover, the reality is that blockchain possesses more than one point that must be

broken down before a hacker can get into the system and the points are ultra intricate and almost

impossible to hack (Walker, 2018).

In addition, the study will then move on to how it was applied to bitcoin and crypto-

currency to give an understanding of the application that may be applied to other industries

(Tudja, 2017). Also, there will be the mention of some risks that have occurred with blockchain,

so that readers are aware that there may need to be some improvements made to ensure the best

security (Kuchler, 2016). Then the research will branch out to begin to study areas where it can

be applied, such as in supply chain management, aviation, schools, etc.


Walker, A. (2018). Cyber Security: Block Chain. Retrieved from


Tudja, M. (2017, Sept. 18). The Impact of Block Chain (and Bitcoin) on Cyber Security.

Retrieved from https://www.incapsula.com/blog/impact-of-blockchain-bitcoin-on-


Kuchler, H. (2016, Sept. 12). Cyber attacks raise questions about blockchain security. Retrieved

from https://www.ft.com/content/05b5efa4-7382-11e6-bf48-b372cdb1043a

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