What is Blockchain and How Does it Work?

Blockchain is a technology that creates trust where none exists. It’s a secure, trusted, and shared digital ledger technology (DLT) that stores information in blocks that are distributed across a network of computers and allows a growing number of transactions to be recorded and verified electronically. Every piece of data on a blockchain is visible to all the users on the blockchain network, which makes it a very transparent and trustworthy system. 

There are many different types of blockchains, but at its core, they are all built to provide a secure, distributed environment to connect businesses and people without the need for intermediaries. The conduct of transactions occur electronically and are verified by the blockchain and the use of smart contracts. This enables people to exchange goods and services without the friction of “in-betweens”. 

The database stores encrypted blocks of data that are in turn, linked together chronologically such that any modification would “break the chain” and be immediately apparent. These information blocks are secured using cryptographic hashing, a programming algorithm that cannot be reversed, therefore, the entries made on a blockchain can never be altered. Each block in the blockchain references the block before it and after it with its own identifier, making it impossible for supply chain data on the blockchain to be hacked, stolen, faked, or erased, therefore, creating trust, certainty, and visibility.

Blockchain offers a complete digital trust, whereby all parties involved can verify that every single aspect of every transaction is completely safe, unchanged, transparent, and virtually impossible to hack.  The asset is also decentralized, meaning blockchains are distributed across a large network, adding to its inherent security.

The idea of our 100% trustworthy shared digital ledger is already starting to transform industries and create new ones. Although the whole concept of the blockchain was first developed in order to support Bitcoin, a kind of cryptocurrency, it is now being considered or applied to a variety of industries.  Medicine technology, robotics, and financial blockchain will touch almost every sector of business, but where it will have the most worldwide impact is the global supply chain.  Blockchain is already in play by Maersk, Walmart, UPS, Nestle, Kroger, Marine Transport International, and a growing number of additional enterprises within the logistics and supply chain management industry.

Where will the future of blockchain go next? As blockchain continues to develop and materialize as a necessity, more and more businesses will adopt the use of blockchain to preserve their systems and processes.  Blockchain is making it possible for businesses to move from a clipboard, data on desks, whiteboards, and desktops to an automated, mobile, fully integrated, and secure digital ledger platform.  Many industries will soon realize that implementing blockchain solutions will secure their place in the changing times.

GrayMatters is on the cutting edge of blockchain databases by applying the technology to help businesses and government entities track, secure, and leverage their data, bringing together all operations into a zero-trust, web-based interface. We are disrupting supply chain management systems currently using more traditional cyber security offerings because our solution can be custom built to integrate with the already established workflow processes of any company.

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