Using Blockchain to Streamline Data Management

Opinion | January 17, 2019 By:

The world of data is shaken up seemingly every few years, and big data is having an even greater effect than the usual changes. 90% of the world’s data has been created in the last two years, through on-demand apps, tracking pixels on social media and search engines, and the like. Businesses worldwide have been forced to find new solutions to address the growth of all kinds of data.

Unstructured data represents a unique challenge to conventional pre-internet databases. Relational database systems and SQL queries are now a thing of the past, and it’s clear that these systems are no longer a viable option. Luckily, blockchain provides an effective, reliable solution to many of those problems.

Issues with Traditional Methods

Outdated modes of storage are inefficient in a variety of ways that can be updated with the use of blockchain. Many businesses, for example, outsource their storage using one of many cloud services, a market just one year away from a $400 billion value.

Although this approach provides better infrastructure than most in-house solutions, it also leads to a number of difficulties.Scaling can become expensive very quickly with current cloud solutions, and performance can be affected significantly when large quantities of data are present. Considering that we produce roughly 2.5 quintillion bytes of data every single day, issues related to big data performance are unacceptably inefficient.

Beyond performance and scalability concerns, centralized systems like cloud services have an increased vulnerability to attacks and hacking which have affected many companies in the past several years. Blockchain offers increased security, scalability, and efficiency relative to its traditional competitors.

Blockchain in Data

Rather than a centralized organization as seen in cloud services, blockchain technology is decentralized and much more difficult to infiltrate. Confirmation by a massive number of nodes also means that once a transaction is recognized by the blockchain, it can’t be removed later.

The advantages involved with blockchain are further improved upon through the use of swarming and sharding. Swarming divides nodes geographically, allowing the network to handle higher amounts of traffic. Sharding is the process of splitting files into fragments before confirming them on the network, preventing any unintended node from accessing the complete file.

Older methods of storage and conventional infrastructure may have been sufficient at an earlier time, but they are no longer capable of handling the massive amounts of data we produce every day. Blockchain is a secure, efficient solution that solves many of the problems associated with traditional storage while improving transactions in a variety of ways.