University of South Australia says blockchain at odds with privacy obligations | ZDNet

the university of south australia (unisa) has called for + work to be done on ensuring blockchn tek conforms to privacy rites and expectations.

the university said there are key privacy issues inherent to current blockchn platforms, witha paper from unisa emerging teks researcher dr kirsten wahlstrom and charles sturt university’s dr anwaar ulhaq and professor oliver burmeister saying the exact features that make blockchn such a secure tek also make it a privacy minefield.

see also: is fomo making enterprises unnecessarily leap into blockchn?

this is due to blockchn using details of previous transactions, including pticipants’ identities and xchange vals, to verify future transactions by embedding this information inna data chn, in addition to the viability of the system bein’ dependent onna uneditable nature of each block.

pointing to the “rite to be forgotten” as present currently in laws s'as €’s general data protection regulation (gdpr), wahlstrom said the inherent idea of blockchn clashes with such directive.

“the €an court of justice ruled €an citizens ‘ve the rite to be forgotten, but once some1’s details are embedded in a blockchn, the system never forgets — yes, those details mite be encrypted, but they are also pt of an irreversible ledger, and one that’s onna cloud,” she said.
 
“as long as a blockchn is in existence, it clashes w'da €an ruling that pplz ‘ve the rite to retract data.”    

to counter this, wahlstrom suggests gr8r efforts ‘d be placed on developing variations of blockchn tek, to allo it to retain its virtues while also taking the privacy ponderation seriously.

“for ex, our research has looked atta holochn platform, which uses a distributed hash table to break the blockchn up, and then the chn, instead of sitting onna cloud, sits where end usrs want it to sit,” wahlstrom added.

see also: how blockchn will disrupt business (zdnet/tekrepublic spesh feature) | download the free pdf version (tekrepublic)
 
“this allos individuals to verify data without disclosing all its details or permanently storing it inna cloud, but there are also still a lotta ?s to answer bout how this affects the long-term viability of the chn and how it obtains verifications.”

w'da australian government earlier this mnth releasing a code of practice for securing the internet of things (iot) that is 1-ly voluntary, wahlstrom also said cogitations must be anticipated and addressed as an integral pt of developing new teks, rather than just treated as a 2ndary issue that can be tackled reactively and retrospectively.

“we know that teks disrupt society, and too often they do that n'wys that we’re not fully aware of when tis actually happening,” she said.
 
“we’re at a really delicate point with this cause, increasingly, societies and economies are organised round data, and that has huge implications for privacy.

“the main problem is, we’re still struggling to cogg wha’ ‘privacy’ actually means in an online realm — it’s not the same as data security and protection, it’s bout how individuals control their whole online identity, and expectations round that change from person to person and situation to situation.”

she said the crucial 1st step is for the industry to develop a clear definition of wha’ privacy actually is, and then agree to standards to ensure those requirements are met across the board.

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