Why decentralization is essential for protecting user data and privacy

Centralized data management is outdated and vulnerable to hacking, says Li Jun of Ontology. Here’s how blockchain can make data more secure.

A recent study on cybersecurity statistics revealed that data breaches exposed 36 billion records in the first half of 2020 alone. If we stop and think about that for a second, it is truly staggering. Users are currently the most vulnerable they have ever been, with the global pandemic exacerbating the risks of fraud as people are forced to increasingly operate online. With the migration of services online has come an increased responsibility to manage the way data is stored.

Traditionally, different sectors have used centralized paper or spreadsheets on internal computers to house information and data sets. However, as we have seen, increasingly sophisticated technology has led to a higher risk of threats to private information, especially when housed on centralized systems. Moving forward, it is essential that businesses and individuals invest in decentralized solutions to store and manage data. On a macro scale, end-to-end technology run on blockchain enables private information to be shared securely, while users remain in full control of their data. From an individual perspective, investment in decentralized digital identity solutions can help users take back control of how and when their data is shared, especially when the current systems are not taking adequate precautions to protect their privacy.

The risks of centralized data

Despite unprecedented developments in technology over the past 30 years, many of the systems that underpin the way we share and manage data are frighteningly outdated. Within the healthcare sphere, it is still common practice for hospitals to store patient data on centralized systems. This means that large portions of sensitive patient information are too often stored on computers and spreadsheets with limited security.

Recent events within Ireland showcased the inherent risks ...

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