Dr Carsten Stöcker of the innogy Innovation Hub explores IOTA for the machine economy.
Historically, trust has been “added on” to products or transactions as they flowed through a value chain for physical goods or services. Physical, or electronic, records trail every object to prove its origin, destination, quantity and history. Producing, tracking and verifying all this information imposes a massive “trust tax” of time and manual effort on banks, accountants, lawyers, auditors, quality inspectors and support functions. Important information is lost, inaccessible or even intentionally hidden.
As the fourth industrial revolution unfolds, blurring the line between the physical and digital worlds, blockchain is emerging to significantly improve authenticity and integrity of data to follow physical objects or services and guide them through the entire value chain. When combined with cryptographically secure machine identities, blockchain will create truly reliable and immutable records to make it easier and less expensive for suppliers and customers to transact with one another in a verifiable way.