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Oracle Blockchain Blog

Why Businesses Need Blockchain: Myth vs. Reality

Mary Hall
Director, Oracle Blockchain Product Marketing

From supply chain to human resources, blockchain (distributed ledger technology) will  impact every industry it touches. However, myths around what the distributed ledger technology is and how it works threaten to prevent businesses from capitalizing on its far-reaching potential to impact positive change. When it comes to blockchain technology, there is a fear factor. Some of what frightens potential users is the technology's cryptocurreny origins. But blockchain has many uses beyond crypto. Let's take a look at some of the common misconceptions that persist around blockchain and separate the myths from the realities.

MYTH 1 Blockchains Are Only Designed to Help Manage Money

Yes, blockchains can (and are) being used to manage financial transactions, but they are also being used to accelerate the trading and settlement of transactions, to enhance cross-border payments and transfers, and to make the supply chain traceable from end-to-end.  A blockchain can increase transparency around any type of transaction—from goods moving through a supply chain to the verification of the education and degrees a student needs to earn a degree. Blockchain can also be used to verify the credentials of a job applicant, so future employers can ensure that the person they wish to hire actually has the skills they claim to have.

MYTH 2 Blockchains Consume Insane Amounts of Energy, Driving Up Costs
While it's true that mining via permissionless blockchains (used to mine cryptocurrencies) drives up costs, this is not true of the permissioned blockchains most typically used to perform business transactions. Permissioned blockchains don't typically involve cryptocurrency mining.
The governing body of trusted participants creates the rules to validate information across the network on the chain. Permissioned blockchains have actually been proven to be cost-effective.


MYTH 3: Bitcoin is Blockchain and Blockchain is Bitcoin
Beyond serving as the underlying technology used by Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, blockchain has many other potential uses across all enterprise activities, including insurance, healthcare, supply chain,and identity verification. So now that we've dispelled many of the misconceptions about blockchain, let's talk about the realities.

Blockchain can help revolutionize current business processes in the following ways:

  1. Track & Trace: Enable distributed, autonomous marketplaces by allowing asset owners to track and trace things of value—such as outstanding invoices—in a secure, transparent, and private "chain" of transactions without need for reconciliation. This capability adds speed and flexibility to cash and asset management.
  2. Speed: Accelerate business transactions through automated smart contracts, instant payments, and Internet of Things (IoT)-activated shipments. Without conflicting data and paper-based processes, errors and missing information are reduced and business transactions can happen in seconds instead of days or months.
  3. Security: Manage and secure decentralized private records with encryption of each individual data record or element using a blockchain member’s key. This is not to say that blockchain makes all data 100% secure, but a cybercriminal would need to have access to each key of each member to access all of the blockchain data.
  4. Provenance:  Verify the authenticity of products,ingredients and raw materials to guarantee product quality and safety by making activities, like the recall of defective products like auto parts or spoiled lettuce, much faster and more effective. Goods can also be authenticated to prevent fakes.

With all these benefits, it's clear that blockchain is a technology you might want to explore.  Here are a few resources to help you determine if blockchain might be right for your business.

Get the complimentary infographic "Blockchain for Business:Separating the Myth from the Realities."

To learn more about Blockchain Technology visit the Oracle Blockchain website.

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