What Is Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT)?
Today’s world is manifesting a revolution in technology that is proving beneficial in the many ways transactions are conducted. Take the case of legacy systems that long dominated control via centralized power. Bitcoin’s introduction of the distributed ledger technology (DLT) in 2008 finally broke the clutches of centralization to make possible the running of effective networks on a worldwide scale. A DLT subset called blockchain bannered how decentralized finance and financial technology companies disrupted, or rather, upgraded the whole financial landscape.
A Closer Look at DLT
The distributed ledger technology is a decentralized digital system enabling direct transactions between parties without the need for intermediaries or a central authority to run things. Transactions under smart contracts are recorded simultaneously in real-time in a transparent ledger with all anonymously participating nodes or computers having a copy thereof. DLT applies cryptographic validation and an automated consensus algorithm that each node follows so that transactions qualify and verified before immutably recorded on the ledger.
DLT can also be used for centralized ledgers that require the privacy of data. Users are known to each other as in a company and the validation of transactions is restricted and transactions need not be verified by all participating users of the ledger.
Just How Vital DLT Is
Distributed ledger technology when applied can inevitably disrupt obsolete financial processes for better efficiency, effectiveness, resiliency, and reliability of services. Transactions can finally do away with expensive third-party mediation such as lawyers, accountants, financial institutions, and cross-border payments. The unbanked can now access finance through DLT. Whereas before, the underserved populations of countries are outside of the financial world.
Industries are set to immensely benefit from the use of distributed ledger technology including the government’s financial systems, manufacturing, trading, clean energy, art, music and entertainment, precious elements such as diamonds, etc. Traditional record-keeping of supply chains can be disrupted for faster and efficient transactions, lower fees, and quicker payment transfers.
Additionally, DLT carries multiple points of failure, making the handling of records more secure and free from manipulation. Unlike centralized databases which are secretive and prone to graft and corruption, having a single point of failure that can collapse the system at any point in time.
Government services will improve a lot if DLT is utilized. Speedier transactions will become visible in the distribution of social benefits, property deeds transfer, the collection of taxes, and the voting system. DLT can also be a vital instrument in the processing and execution of legal documents. What’s more, it can store the personal data of an individual and can share select information whenever needed in a transaction.
Distributed ledger technology is a revolutionary invention and redefines the gathering and communication of information such that it can be employed to static data as in a registry or dynamic data as in transactions. It is more of the management of a record system in contrast with maintaining a database such as plain custodianship. Startup companies and giant techs like Microsoft and IBM are exploring the far-reaching implications of DLT. Some of the more popular DLT protocols aside from Bitcoin are Ethereum, Hyperledger Fabric, Quorum, and R3 Corda.
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