Steve Express in United Kingdom. This project aimed at

Steve Huckle, Rituparna
Bhattacharya, Martin White and Natalia Beloff (2016) “Internet of
Things, Blockchain and Shared Economy Applications”

 

This research paper primarily talks about how Internet of Things coupled
with blockchain technology can be instrumental in developing shared economy
applications. The main area of focus is how blockchain technology can be
exploited effectively which allows people to monetize, securely, their things
to create more wealth. The authors have presented few examples of existing distributed
applications in the context of Internet of Things architecture using blockchain
technology. Airbnb and Uber, being few examples of shared economy applications,
have already started exploiting Internet of Things. However, there are very few
distributed applications (D-apps) that have implemented blockchain technology
in Internet of Things architecture.

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ExpressIT – A project named ‘Connecting Virtual Communities to the Digital Economy through
Micro-Payment Technologies’ was launched by the University of Sussex and
American Express in United Kingdom. This project aimed at integrating payments
and rewards technologies into digital economy applications.

Shared Things – This project is all about monetizing shared economy
applications. It is interested in developing, implementing, testing and
evaluating D-apps by using real-world scenarios. This project is underpinned by
some key IoT and blockchain technologies.

The author feels that however disruptive, the technologies used by
D-apps like Uber are, it is an ideal candidate itself for disruption caused by
blockchain technology.

While the possibility and leverage for convergence of blockchain
technology with Internet of Things architecture are discussed in our research
project, ideal real-life blockchain integrated IoT scenarios are discussed in
this paper. AutoPay – an autonomous payment device (IoT) that initiates
transactions which are concluded using blockchain technology. Leftover Foreign
Currency (LFC) – cross border payments concept coupled with smart contract
exchange that predominantly uses blockchain technology. Though these scenarios
are being implemented effectively in other countries, in India, however, it is
at its embryonic stage.

 

 

Martin Weiss, Adele Botha, Marlien
Herselman, Glaudina Loots (2017) “Blockchain as an enabler for public mHealth solutions
in South Africa”

 

This research paper focusses on the potential benefits to mHealth in
implementing blockchain technology. Mobile Health (mHealth) which is an
emerging concept, predominantly uses mobile communication devices for health
services, information and data collection. mHealth being an important subset of
eHealth, faces its own unique challenges – misinterpretation of information,
level of security and confidentiality issues. The authors feel that mHealth
applications would require extensive security infrastructure that is compliant
with POPI Act. 

The mHealth Development Board in South Africa has described about 125
mHealth applications that are available for download from the app store for
Android based devices. These mobile applications can be broadly classified as
follows:
1. On-board application – These
applications do not require any personal information to process. Hence, no
privacy or confidentiality requirements are imposed on these kind of
applications.          
2. Interactive connected applications and
services – These are typically
surveys and questionnaires that would require the user to respond to the
questions. Based on the responses, the facilitator processes and interprets the
information.
3. Extended or connected applications
– These applications have screening or diagnostic point of care sensors
connected to the devices. These devices are typically either operated by the
user or may be administered by a facilitator.

The authors have concluded that there is a requirement to implement
mHealth security that are fundamentally different and require an alternative
framework to deliver secure information. Considering the mobile bandwidth and
mobile data usage constraints, the existing security solutions do not meet the
security compliance requirements of POPI Act. Blockchain technology has the
potential to provide the extent of security which will comply with the
requirements of POPI Act, with the added benefits of provenance and information
irrefutability.

 

Guy Zyskind, Oz Nathan &
Alex Sandy Pentland (2015) “Decentralizing Privacy: Using Blockchain to Protect
Personal Data”

 

This study proposes a decentralized personal data management system that
ensures that users own and control their data. This can be done by implementing
a protocol that turns a blockchain into an automated access-control manager
that does not require trust in a third party. The transactions carried out
through this model will be non-financial.

The need for this system arises because of the increasing volumes of
data and increase in incidents of data leaks and security breaches which has
resulted in a breach of user’s privacy. At present, the issues faced by the
users are data ownership, data transparency and access control. The proposed
system involves three parties: users who wish to download applications on
devices, providers of these services and entities that maintain the blockchain.

When a user installs an application under this system, a new identity is
created and sent to the blockchain. Data collected on the phone is encrypted
and sent to the Blockchain. The application and the user can access the data
using the shared encryption key. The permissions for usage of data by the
application are also checked. The study also explains the technical network
protocol used to create and implement this system.

This article is extremely helpful for our project as it shows how
blockchain technology can be used to safeguard data and prevent hacking, phishing
or any other form of data leaks. There is a common misconception that
blockchain technology is susceptible to cyber-crimes. This study has helped us
in proving that blockchain can be used to safeguard data, and its
implementation in the Finance sector is safe. The use of blockchain is
relatively safer than trusting the entire data with a third party without any
access.

 

European Central Bank (2015) “Distributed
Ledger Technology”

 

The study focuses on Distributed Ledger Technology and how this concept
can be implemented in the securities market to overcome challenges faced in the
existing system. A distributed ledger is essentially a record of information or
database that is shared across a network.

The securities market is quite complex, with many parties involved and
multiple legal and technical agreements required for transactions. The
following would be the benefits if distributed ledger technology is implemented
in the securities market: Easy tracking of securities ownership, small and
medium enterprises could gain easier access to funding, shorter settlement
cycles, improved regulatory reporting and increased transparency. 

The article has identified three areas where special consideration is to
be given. Firstly, this system has to ensure that only securities that are
publically issued are traded and no unwarranted securities are created. This
function is generally carried out by depositories, but would need to be taken
care of by the distributed ledger technology. The second consideration relates
to delivery of securities and payment. At present, the platform owns the
securities and cash, eliminating settlement risk. In order to implement
distributed ledger technology, both cash and securities would need to be on the
same ledger. Lastly, in case this system is implemented and issuers and
investors transact directly, financial institutions become redundant in this
field. This leaves the question of who can regulate and who would be
responsible in case of a technical failure.

Thus, the article has very efficiently summarized the benefits and the
possible challenges that might be encountered while implementing distributed
ledger technology in the securities market. Nasdaq, Australian Stock Exchange
(ASE) and Japan Exchange Group (JPX) have already begun working on the
implementation of blockchain in the securities market. India’s National Stock
Exchange (NSE) has also conducted a blockchain trial with leading banks in
India such as IDFC and ICICI. In our project, we are using the information used
in this article to understand the benefits and potential challenges that might
be faced in implementing blockchain technology in India. The trial run
conducted by NSE is a very positive step regarding the implementation of
blockchain technology in India.

 

Ayushi Gupta, Jyotirmay Patel,
Mansi Gupta, Harshit Gupta (2017) “Issues and Effectiveness of
Blockchain Technology on Digital Voting”

 

This study focuses on the impact of using Blockchain Technology in the
voting system in India. It proposes using Blockchain Technology in digital
voting, which is essentially casting votes using a machine in a polling
station, or using a browser; as against the traditional paper based voting
system.

Using this system, the voter downloads and installs the voting booth and
then submits identity information for verification. The voter is now authorized
to cast a ballot. The voter then votes and submits their ballot to a secure
blockchain based ballot box, thus retaining anonymity and secrecy. The voter
can audit the ballot box to ensure that the election results are accurate.

This system overcomes many disadvantages of the traditional paper based
or digital voting scheme. It provides convenience to the voters, it is less
time consuming and is also much more secure. Implementation of Blockchain
Technology might also result in an increased number of voters in the country
due to ease of voting.

This article is used in our research to find out the possible impact of
Blockchain Technology for voting in Annual General Meeting’s and other meetings
of a Company. If Blockchain Technology is implemented in the Stock Exchanges in
India, it would also be very convenient for members to vote in meetings using
this technology.

 

 

Eric Piscini, David Dalton and Lory Kehoe (2017) “Blockchain
& Cybersecurity”

 

This article mainly discusses the security aspect of blockchain
technology and it emphasis mainly on addressing the issue of how safe and
secure the blockchain is as a data sharing technology. The paper assess the
blockchain technology’s security features with the CIA security triad model, which
is composed of three areas:
(1) Confidentiality; (2) Integrity and (3) Availability

Confidentiality – Blockchains are designed in such a way that if an
attacker gets access to the blockchain network then it is more likely that the
attacker will get access to the data stored in blockchain. So the most
important controls to be put in place in case of blockchain is with respect to
authentication and authorization controls. This becomes of particular importance
in case of Public blockchains as anyone can access public blockchain provided
they have the software downloaded. Private Blockchian on the other hand has
layers of internal security features such as firewalls, Intrusion Detection and
Prevention Systems, etc. which is called as a Defense in depth strategy. The
authors feel that setting up Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) in blockchain can
help in making Blockchains more secure. Public Key Infrastructure is a set of
roles, policies and procedures required to store, manage and revoke digital
certificates and manage public key encryption.

Integrity – With regard to the integrity of data stored on
Blockchain, the authors feel that Blockchain can be considered as a secure
technology with respect to the integrity of the data stored in the blockchain.
Sequential Hashing (function by which input data turns into a fingerprint of
the data, thus making it hard to understand the input data), cryptography, decentralized
structure and consensus model (51%  of users
on the blockchain need to agree that a transaction is valid before it can
stored on the blockchain platform) makes the data stored on Blockchain
immutable.

Availability – Blockchain being a distributed ledger, ensures that a
copy of the information is available to all the nodes within a blockchain. However
the authors are of the opinion that blockchain is still prone to attacks. One
such attack that can affect Blockchain is Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS).

The authors are of the opinion that all organization should follow a
secure, vigilant and resilient approach in order to maintain a secure
blockchain technology.

Jason Killmeyer and Mark White
(2017) “Will Blockchain transform the public sector?”

 

This article primarily discusses blockchain as a technology can be used
by Government and the Public Sector to improve its own functioning and bringing
about improved efficiency in the functioning of the public sector. The authors
introduces us to the current status of implementation of Blockchain in the
public sector around with major improvements taking place in Europe and United
States of America.

There are various applications of Blockchain in the public sector. A few
of them are land registration, voting (elections), Identity Management, Supply
Chain traceability, Health care etc. The business values of blockchain as
listed by the authors are broadly classified into three; Record keeping, Value
transfer and Smart Contracts. The article discusses the applications of
blockchain in the three areas mainly; Identity Management, Land Registration
and Voting.

Identity Management – The authors are of the opinion that Digital identity
is the future and Blockchain can help in providing the much required driving
force in implementing Digital Identity across the public sector. The business
value of record keeping provided by Blockchain can be used by Governments to
bring about Identity Management and this can ensure more efficient and
trustworthy transactions to take place across the country. Settting up specific
controls over which identity elements are shared for which purpose.

Land Registration- The authors believe that by using blockchain in land
registration can help in providing a reliable property record can be created. A
decentralized system of land registration can reduce the intermediaries
involved in the process of land registration, provide more transparency among
parties, provide annual cost savings and can drive the move towards a paperless
Record keeping system.

Voting – Election Voting is one such activity where blockchain
implementation can help in bringing about huge cost savings to the government
and in turn also bring about greater participation among the population of a
country. The authors believe that blending Identity Management with election
voting can bring about more transparency in the election process.

 

Steve Fromhart and Lincy
Therattil “Making blockchain real for custromer
loyalty programs”

This research paper mainly emphasis on how blockchain can help banks and
financial centres in providing customer loyalty programs to their faithful
customers. The research papers states that almost 80% of the respondents were
likely to choose a bank that offered them rewards for being a good customer.
According to the authors, by using the smart contract feature of blockchain it
would be easier to implement loyalty programs by banks for their customers. By
using codes which automatically implements the terms of an agreement between
parties can help in providing real time loyalty rewards to customers.

The paper also discusses on how the loyalty reward system would work in
a Blockchain environment. The paper introduces a system of loyalty token which
would facilitate in implementing in crediting loyalty points to the customers
Digital wallet by interacting with the Bank and the based on the set of
protocols and algorithms as set up in the Smart Contract.

The concept of Smart contract has been applied intensively and the same
should be altered according to the banks and companies policies. The
implementation of blockchain in loyalty reward program can be a game changer in
the current business scenario. Thus through this paper we are able to
understand how blockchain can be used by banks to provide add on services to
its customers, thus helping in improving the performance of banks and changing
the entire dynamics of banking globally.        

 

Angela Wells & Lara Llopis
(2018) “Beyond the Hype: Blockchain for Humanity”

 

This research paper tries to bring out the concept of using blockchain
technology in providing humanitarian aid. It aims at proving that blockchain
can be used in sectors, rather than just the finance sector, as most people
perceive.

The author uses the example of Bitnation, which is a humanitarian agency
that allows donors to make donations using bitcoins. ID2020 and Microsoft are
also creating a system whereby people are allowed to register their identity
documents on a blockchain data base. This would be extremely beneficial to
millions of refugees who lack basic government and financial services. An
organization in Lebanon called Aid:Tech provides vouchers to refugees on a
blockchain system, with which they can purchase goods from the local refugee economy.

Many Governments have also adopted blockchain for administrative
purposes. It is being used for land title deeds in Georgia, digital identities
for refugees in Finland and health records in Estonia.

The author highlights the importance of using new technology such as
blockchain for social causes and overcoming challenges faced by the
marginalized communities. The major benefits of using blockchain technology in
providing humanitarian aid are allowing refugees to protect and store their
identity without any corruption and the workers can have safer working
conditions with the use of smart contracts.

Thus, this paper highlights the use of blockchain technology for reasons
other than financial transactions, widening the scope of the emerging
technology.