Blockchain has been all the rage in recent years, and it's mostly because of its association with Bitcoin. But what most people don't know is that outside of finance, the technology is also starting to challenge practices in other industries as well. Many sectors are realizing how much blockchain can change their current processes for the better.
Here are just some of the sectors blockchain technology is heavily impacting:
One of the biggest pains that professionals in the real estate sector face is mounds of paperwork, which are typically static whether they're paper-based or digital. Luckily, there is now a thing called smart contracts, which writer Rich Maagul defines as a software program that automates and self-executes the set of terms and conditions between the buyer and the seller. In other words: they're designed to validate and enforce digital agreements that cannot be manipulated by any party.
This can be beneficial in carrying out transactions, which is often a painstaking process. All parties will be notified right away once a buyer completes the down payment. Furthermore, the smart contract is also responsible for regulating what happens if things don't go according to plan. Smart contracts relieve the real estate agent of additional responsibility, too, since they no longer have to oversee the entire transaction. Sellers and buyers will be able to facilitate home transfers on their own.
Rigged votes and irregularities in voting have always been prevalent in politics, but it could all be a thing of the past when blockchain is utilized. The traditional voting process entails voters to either stand in line to cast votes or mail in their ballots. Online voting is possible in some cases, too, but whichever method voting is done, a central authority always oversees the process, leading to fraud issues.
With blockchain technology, We Forum notes that voting systems can be completely unhackable. From voter registrations all the way down to tallying votes, the system will be bulletproof. No vote can be rigged, either, as each ID can only be attributed to a single vote. All votes are added to a ledger, and therefore can no longer be changed nor erased.
It's no secret that legal services are often expensive. People who wish to utilize an attorney's expertise would usually have to cough up a considerable amount of money to do so. But now, entrepreneurs have come up with an alternative to traditional lawyers. Writer James Gonzales points out that there are now companies whose aim is to decentralize law firms via the principles of blockchain technology.
For instance, there are online platforms that exist to dispense legal expertise by creating a "legal" blockchain and allow clients to connect with legal experts from any part of the world. Businesses then "mine" pertinent information akin to the process of mining cryptocurrency. This is a boon for clients as they are able to digitally connect with suitable legal experts regardless of their geographical location and budget. On the flip side, lawyers have the freedom and flexibility to work from any location. Payments also use a smart contract as a trusted escrow, so transactions between clients and lawyers are safe.
Whenever you shop, your trust is typically tied to the store or marketplace in which you purchase goods. Blockchain is capable of changing this dynamic by decentralizing trust. Retail Insight Network states that blockchain presents an opportunity to create a decentralized, secure network of data about the things that we buy that are accessible to just about everyone.
As opposed to the traditional way of shopping, there can be vehicles for connecting buyers and sellers, sans the middleman and associated fees. Customers can purchase goods using cryptocurrency, and sellers get the payout in crypto as well. All data is also distributed across the global network instead of being stored in a central database, so there is complete transparency and zero cases of fraud.