In our current environment, cybersecurity concerns are greater than ever. The Covid-19 disruption and subsequent shifts made by organizations to navigate this changed reality opened the door to new IT risks and sustained cyberattacks. We are also in the midst of a significant transformation of the compliance landscape. With more advanced threats straining traditional security measures, it is time for CIOs and CISOs to start thinking about how crypto can help them achieve regulatory compliance.
Between legislation and regulators, remote work enablement and privacy issues, regulatory compliance is one of the evolving and challenging realities of technology operations. Some industries inherently operate under more stringent compliance than others due to the sensitive nature of the information that they handle.
From logs and security processes to data handling and administration, nearly every component of computing systems may fall under the microscope of regulatory compliance requirements. Compliance has never been easy, and it isn’t supposed to be. But in today’s rapidly changing IT world, compliance is only getting harder. Compliance efforts consume multi-functional resources, and, by design, compliance penalties will adversely impact a business monetarily and affect its brand.
To compete effectively in an ever-challenging environment of regulations, including “buzz” standards such as CCPA and GDPR, technologists must embrace every business advantage possible. Digital transformation and transactions have steadily become the norm, displacing physical transactions and increasing the complexity and volume of data and systems that drive digital business. One of the technology trends that many companies have opened themselves to is blockchain – an organically distributed technology that aligns with private, hybrid and public cloud scenarios. Thinking beyond bitcoin, companies need to consider blockchain as a new level of protection in cybersecurity.
Among its many features, blockchain touts an immutable ledger that can serve as the record of change, access and values. Once data enters the record in blockchain, it cannot be modified, amended or deleted. When these technologies combine with updated business processes, blockchain’s compliance-friendly features prove their value for the business that has particular regulatory needs. A new wave of compliance solutions aims to save time, reduce costs and minimize efforts in achieving and maintaining compliance.
On the other side of these operations, the regulators that collect and report information also gain advantages from blockchain technology. In many cases, regulations can be complex, multi-phased endeavors that are hard to navigate. Blockchain’s shared architecture and inherent security can alleviate the need for extensive manual oversight and streamline regulatory processes for both parties.
By design, blockchain data is shared but secure data. The benefit to regulators is the relief from collection, storage, reconciliation and aggregation of the information themselves. Blockchain provides secure, real-time access to records and data, eliminating reactive analysis components that characterize current processes.
Cloud: The Finish Line
In fairness, there is a long way to go before mainstream businesses can easily implement and reap the benefits of blockchain. For many organizations, blockchain compliance has to partner with tangible risks and costs. For the time being, two significant challenges shape the perception and reality of blockchain technology in compliance areas:
1. Technical Competency: For most organizations, technical skills and experience in blockchain technologies are challenging to locate.
2. Blockchain History: Compared to decades of technical and operational experience in the enterprise, blockchain has not been on the scene very long, plus it is associated heavily with bitcoin.
Blockchain technologies possess a secure, simple nature that can help improve compliance collection, compliance reporting and all the processes that revolve around compliance efforts. We can be sure that when the distributed nature of blockchain-based compliance meets distributed cloud technologies, the results will spread throughout countless industries. Many regulatory challenges, inefficiencies and bottlenecks could be eliminated or minimized – and data security will also be enhanced.
Blockchain technologies need more time, adoption and development before they begin to take hold and conquer regulation needs en masse. Through strategic adoption, visionary organizations that invest the time now stand to emerge as early benefactors of this nascent technology.