3 ways blockchain enhances the practical applications of big data

19th May `18, 03:15 PM in Analytics

Blockchain technology is the single most polarizing tech innovation in the market right now. Many industries are still…

Megan Mary Jane
Megan Mary Jane Contributor

Blockchain technology is the single most polarizing tech innovation in the market right now. Many industries are still undecided on whether blockchain technology will be an asset that will unlock new levels of value OR a threat that could potentially send them into oblivion. The many applications of blockchain technology includes cryptocurrency, smart contracts, decentralized ledgers, and consensus protocols. Yet, beyond these, blockchain has the potential to disrupt many industries ranging from real estate, to shipping, and all the way to prescription drugs. This piece examines how blockchain technology could directly influence the turn of events in the big-data industry in the medium to long terms.

Big data is simply a large data set that is too voluminous to be managed by traditional data-processing software. When analysed computationally however, they can reveal interesting patterns, trends, and associations betraying underlying human behaviours.

Big data is big across many industries and the world is starting to pay special attention to the wisdom of the crowd by being patient enough to hear what the data is saying. Big data is one the industries that is set to experience first-hand, the disruptive power of blockchain technology. Below are three ways blockchain could influence the big data industry

1. More efficient data storage

The world is generating an unprecedented amount of data as the Internet of Things enables all kinds of devices record activity across different parameters. In 2017, IBM reported that about 2.5 quintillion bytes of data are generated every day as enterprise continue to strive towards data-driven decisions. The problem however is that enterprise clients, governments, and sometimes individuals are at loss on how to securely store the huge treasure troves of data that they are generating or capturing.

Traditional data storage methods are expensive because of the huge resources needed to manage a centralized data centre. Secondly, storing data in a central location increases the odds of a data breach since a security breach at any of the locations makes all the data vulnerable. More so, storing data in centralized locations also increases the odds of data loss in the event of a mishap.

With the decentralized nature of blockchain technology, data is stored on a decentralized network; hence, all the potential failpoint for a data breach or data loss become less off a worry. The fact that no single individual or company oversees the storing or keeping blockchain data also ensure that accuracy, integrity, and incorruptible nature of data sets.

2. Speedy data processing for real-time analytics

Big data is not much valuable in itself unless the data can be analysed to mine out the underlying behavioural patterns. Real-time data analysis makes its easier to make on-demand decisions – hence, organizations will find it much easier to run effectively and with significantly lower overheads.

Blockchain technology enhances the possibilities of real-time data analytics – all that will be required of developers are smart contracts that acts based on the of “if this, then that” logic of your smart contract. Blockchain technology can also be instrumental in unveiling new methods for monetizing the data.

3. Improved fraud detection and prevention

Blockchain technology can be a powerful tool for preventing data fraud by ensuring the immutability of data. Different kinds of data are valuable in different ecosystems – for instance, sales volume, inventory, and overhead expenses are some important data for a retail business.

The decentralized nature of blockchain technology ensures that you can’t edit, tweak, or manipulate data once stored on the blockchain. Where applicable and allowed, changes to a data set stored on the blockchain will be visible throughout all the nodes of the platform. Hence, it will be practically impossible to pull off data fraud on data stored on the blockchain.