Blockchain may still not be a familiar term for the technologically challenged, but it is quietly gaining depth and scale. It may soon become a part of our daily life, revolutionizing the way we transact.
The distributed ledgers, as blockchain is called, is the underlying technology used in encrypted digital currencies such as Bitcoins.
There are nearly a thousand such blockchain-based cryptocurrencies, like Ethereum, that are stronger and more secure than Bitcoins.
The technology can make cross-border money transactions a lot more secure, while keeping the process more transparent than the current systems. But that is just one of many areas where processes, thanks to blockchain, are becoming more efficient.
Internet has helped do away with some of the most visible middlemen in our life- the once-ubiquitous matchmaker, for instance- but corporates have slowly taken over the space, without the common man even realizing that he now has to deal with a new intermediary.
These intermediaries, from banks to education intuitions to hospitals, have over the years become more than just facilitators. Behind closed doors, they make decisions that affect our life.
In the financial sector, institutions are increasingly being questioned for treating people’s money as their own.
Blockchain, with its inherent qualities of transparency and security, is gaining strength in this background.
While its application is wide, banking is likely to be the sector that is going to witness the first, and probably the deepest and widest, impact of blockchain.
The technology, though, isn’t aimed at crippling the banking system, but modernizing it. That is the disruption it will bring also to education, public health and elsewhere.
Of course, there have been concerns about cryptocurrencies making transactions easier for criminals as well. But, trying to muzzle digital currencies like Bitcoins and undermining the technology is like trying to suppress a revolution. Every time you try to crush it, it gains strength.
Blockchain will usher in a new world order over the years. With that will surely come a change in mindset.
We have seen how those who had made the clarion call of “computer go back” changed their stance and competed with each other to claim the credit for propagating information technology. Blockchain, too, will see a similar change in the perception towards it.