By Bojan Simic, Forbes Councils May 31, 2018
A crypto-craze fueled by digital currency volatility is bringing blockchain technology, the digital ledger system that underlies such currencies, into the spotlight. At the same time, recent calls to take back ownership of personal identity are making blockchain’s decentralized nature more appealing. As demonstrated by consumer data breaches — including those affecting Orbitz, Saks Fifth Avenue and more recently, Delta Airlines — our personal information is highly susceptible to fraud when stored in centralized databases. As an increasing amount of the world’s banking and commerce moves online, the temptation for mischief and theft has increased as well. However, blockchain may hold the key to keeping identities safe through its core feature of decentralization.
Identity Data Risks Are Growing
Blockchain could act as the foundation of the root identity question “Who Am I?” as opposed to the authentication query “Am I Who I Say I Am?” These systems can securely store and make readily available all kinds of information, including sensitive data like our financial history and health records. As consumers, our need to present this data at the time of service, or the point of sale or care, has risen with service providers’ increased online presence.
More at: Can Blockchain Solve Identity Fraud? – Forbes Tech #CyberSecurity
By Raj Sharma, Forbes Councils May 31, 2018
There’s no doubt that blockchain is a hot topic, with management consultants and blockchain experts routinely featured as keynote speakers and panelists at numerous industry events. You can frequently hear: “Before you go in front of your board or executive team, come up with a business case for blockchain.” Perhaps you might have heard this variation on the theme: “Don’t try to sell the technology, it has to be about the business problem that blockchain solves.” It is a common practice to repeat this mantra every time a new technology starts to show promise and everyone starts to jump on the bandwagon. It is particularly difficult to address these questions in the context of blockchain, which is why consultants and enterprises keep fumbling around for a business case.
Blockchain is a transparent, immutable ledger of contracts embedded in digital code that cannot be altered. It is a shared database that timestamps every transaction that occurs. Blockchain enables direct exchange of value between A and B without the need for the middlemen — be it a central authority, broker or notary.
However, despite all the technological advantages it offers, in its purest form, blockchain may not have a place within the confines of an enterprise.
More at: Is There A Business Case For Blockchain? – Forbes Tech #CyberSecurity
By Asia Times Staff May 31, 2018
President Xi Jinping has told a meeting of China’s leading scientists and engineers that today’s “new generation of technology” has the capability to solve the world’s biggest challenges, and this includes food security, energy security and climate change.
This technology, that Xi said spans artificial intelligence, quantum computing, mobile communications, Internet of Things and also blockchain, has the capability to create “breakthrough applications” that can then build a new “scientific and industrial revolution.”
Xi was, reported Xinhua, speaking at the Great Hall of the People as he made the opening address to this week’s 19th Meeting of the Academicians of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the 14th Meeting of the Academicians of the Chinese Academy of Engineering.
More at: Xi Jinping says blockchain can help ‘reshape the world’ – Asia Times
By Marie Huillet May 28, 2018
A new report issued by audit and consulting firm Deloitte has found that blockchain technology will become a critical asset to the retail and consumer packaged goods (CPG) industry. The report analyzed over 50 potential blockchain use cases and suggests that the “potential impact” of the nascent technology “is huge.”
According to the report “New Tech On The Block”, blockchain will become “a standard operational technology across the financial, manufacturing and consumer industries,” saying that the next five years will be “a tipping point” as businesses begin to grasp blockchain’s potential. The report emphasizes that businesses should assess whether their strategic objectives warrant blockchain investment, adding that those who do not at least consider the possibilities are “at risk of falling behind.”
The report tackles the rationale for blockchain across three main areas – consumer, supply chains, and payments and contracts – scoring each in terms of the added-value that blockchain systems could create. Although it focuses on business adoption, the report nonetheless highlights that:
“The ultimate beneficiary will be the consumer. If blockchain can create efficiencies and save costs throughout the supply‐chain, these benefits can be passed on to the consumer in the form of lower prices. If blockchain provides more transparency across the supply‐chain, these benefits can also be passed onto the consumer in the form of safer products and higher quality.”
More at: Deloitte Report Says Businesses Who Don’t Consider Blockchain ‘Risk Falling Behind’ – Cointelegraph
By Anthony Cuthbertson May 18, 2018
Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak has given another powerful endorsement of cryptocurrency and its underlying blockchain technology, hailing its revolutionary potential at a conference on Thursday.
Speaking on stage at the WeAreDevelopers World Congress in Vienna, Mr Wozniak said he believed the blockchain will have a huge impact on the technology sector, hailing it as “the next major IT revolution that is about to happen.”
Despite his positive outlook for bitcoin and blockchain, Mr Wozniak said in a separate interview at the event that he was “bothered by what technology has become,” referencing Facebook’s Cambridge Analytica scandal.
More at: Apple founder Steve Wozniak hails bitcoin and blockchain as ‘next major IT revolution’ – The Independent
From Nima Tabatabai, Westminster Business School, London E8, UK May 17, 2018
The article, “ MBA view: will bitcoin regulation undermine its value? ” (May 16), made disappointing reading, as my fellow MBA colleagues were unable to go deeper than the superficial analysis of bitcoin prevalent in mainstream discourse.
Firstly, bitcoin is not simply a new asset like oil or equities. Bitcoin is a monetary asset, and thus, by definition, is entirely speculative in nature. Bitcoin is thought to be the hardest money created to date, epitomising the school of Austrian Economics. Due to totally inelastic supply and variable demand, volatility will remain high until the rate of entry of new money into the ecosystem is dwarfed by that already inside.
More at: Regulators will struggle to rein in resilient bitcoin – Financial Times
By Jason Bloomberg, Contributor May 17, 2018
8,500 blockchain and cryptocurrency fans packed the New York Hilton Midtown to its gills this week in what organizers were calling the largest blockchain conference ever. Yet, while excitement around these technologies are indubitably at an all-time high, much of the activity at the show diverged from business reality.
The problem: most of the noise around both blockchain and crypto is little more than the community talking to itself – a massive ‘echo chamber’ that in its final analysis promises no lasting business value for its participants.
This echo chamber filled with schemers, scammers, speculators, and their various marks did not account for the entirety of the conversations at Consensus, however.
In contrast to the carnival huckster atmosphere dominating the event were firms focused on the other side of the blockchain equation: those seemingly rare but essential business models where blockchain may actually deliver real business value – in spite of all the nonsense at surrounding booths.
A bifurcation of sorts, therefore, was evident at Consensus: the sober, serious participants focused on business value vs. the insanity that is the frothy blockchain/crypto world today.
More at: Massive Consensus Conference Succumbs To Blockchain ‘Echo Chamber’ – Forbes Tech #CuttingEdge