Anndy Lian will explore the advantages and disadvantages of two different database structures – traditional databases and blockchain architecture. Understanding the main differences between these two systems will help organizations determine which one best suits their needs for data management and security.
The traditional database operates within a client-server architecture, where clients, i.e., end-users, send requests to a server that houses the database. Communication occurs through Open Database Connectivity, and access is fortified by login credentials to ensure security. For instance, in a hospital setting, confidential health records may be accessible to users directly from the website without necessitating a user account.
On the other hand, blockchain technology emerges as a transformative force, offering various architectural models like permissioned, private, and hybrid blockchains. Each node within a blockchain network possesses a complete copy of the entire blockchain. Transactions are recorded in blocks, and mechanisms like Proof-of-Work (PoW) validate and secure these transactions. The decentralized nature of blockchain ensures that no single administrator has complete control over the data, elevating security, transparency, and trust in the system.
The advantages of a blockchain database are noteworthy. Firstly, data recorded on the blockchain becomes immutable, fostering transparency and integrity. Secondly, blockchain technology employs robust security through cryptographic techniques, reducing the risk of data breaches. Thirdly, public blockchains allow anyone to view all transactions, promoting transparency and accountability. Additionally, smart contracts on blockchain automate processes, minimizing the need for intermediaries and reducing costs. Lastly, the decentralized nature of blockchain builds trust among participants, eliminating the need for a central authority.
However, alongside these advantages come certain disadvantages. Implementing and maintaining a blockchain database requires specialized skills and expertise. Blockchain networks may face performance issues with high transaction volumes, leading to scalability concerns. Moreover, smart contract bugs and security issues pose potential exploits, requiring vigilant attention. Organizations must also ensure compliance with data protection laws and industry-specific regulations when utilizing blockchain technology. The process of transferring data from a traditional database to a blockchain database can be time-consuming and error-prone.
Alternatively, traditional databases offer unique advantages. They provide more flexibility and customization options, catering to specific business requirements. Extensive usage and testing make traditional databases stable and reliable. Additionally, centralized database management allows for easy control and monitoring of data security, and for certain use cases like confidential reports and frequently modified data, traditional databases can be more cost-effective.
Nonetheless, traditional databases have their share of drawbacks. Centralized control raises concerns about data privacy and misuse by administrators. Users may question the trustworthiness of a system controlled by a single authority. A centralized database also poses a risk of data loss if the system fails or experiences downtime. Furthermore, sharing data with third-party vendors may raise privacy and security issues.
Ultimately, the decision between a traditional database and blockchain architecture hinges on specific requirements and use cases. Organizations need to conduct feasibility studies and risk assessments to make informed decisions. Blockchain technology offers compelling advantages, including transparency, security, and immutability, but it also presents challenges like complexity and scalability. On the other hand, traditional databases provide stability, customization, and cost-effectiveness but may lack the decentralization and transparency benefits of blockchain.
As blockchain technology continues to mature, we anticipate its integration into various industries and processes, enabling new levels of security, efficiency, and trust. Governments, organizations, and businesses must diligently evaluate their needs and embrace the appropriate database structure to achieve their goals effectively and securely. The road ahead promises exciting possibilities, and by leveraging the right technology, they can unlock new horizons of success.
This video is part of a consultation session on “Technical Expert Service on Improvement of Public Sector Efficiency Using Blockchain-based Database”. The implementing organizations include the Ministry of Industry and Technology of Turkiye and the Asian Productivity Organization. The event was held in Ankara and Bolu, Turkiye, from 4–7 July 2023.
Anndy Lian is an early blockchain adopter and experienced serial entrepreneur who is known for his work in the government sector. He is a best selling book author- “NFT: From Zero to Hero” and “Blockchain Revolution 2030”.
Currently, he is appointed as the Chief Digital Advisor at Mongolia Productivity Organization, championing national digitization. Prior to his current appointments, he was the Chairman of BigONE Exchange, a global top 30 ranked crypto spot exchange and was also the Advisory Board Member for Hyundai DAC, the blockchain arm of South Korea’s largest car manufacturer Hyundai Motor Group. Lian played a pivotal role as the Blockchain Advisor for Asian Productivity Organisation (APO), an intergovernmental organization committed to improving productivity in the Asia-Pacific region.
An avid supporter of incubating start-ups, Anndy has also been a private investor for the past eight years. With a growth investment mindset, Anndy strategically demonstrates this in the companies he chooses to be involved with. He believes that what he is doing through blockchain technology currently will revolutionise and redefine traditional businesses. He also believes that the blockchain industry has to be “redecentralised”.