Bring Trust to Blockchain with Thales
Within a permissioned blockchain, transactions are validated and processed by participants that are already recognized by the ledger. Even though this is the case, there is still a challenge and issue of trust. How can one ensure the blockchain is secure and trustworthy in order to avoid the substantial impact of a cyberattack? The answer is by building security into your blockchain technology from the start, through strong authentication and cryptographic key vaulting.
Thales' Hardware Security Modules (HSMs) and Authentication services can help you secure blockchain in the following three areas:
- Provide strong identities and authentication to gain access to the blockchain;
- Secure core blockchain technologies; and
- Secure communications across the blockchain network.
Thales Blockchain Solutions
Although blockchain is based on sophisticated math and is secure at its foundation with its decentralized approach, there are ways to fool the blockchain to gain advantage. Ensure you build security into your solution from the ground up, always storing your keys in a hardware-based solution to avoid those pitfalls and remain protected.
Luna Network HSMs are designed to store the private keys used by blockchain members to sign all transactions in a FIPS 140-2 Level 3 dedicated cryptographic processor. Keys are stored throughout their lifecycle; ensuring cryptographic keys cannot be accessed, modified or used by unauthorized devices or people. Cryptographic keys kept in software are at risk of theft, compromising the entire blockchain ledger.
ProtectServer HSMs, like the Luna Network HSMs, are designed to protect cryptographic keys against compromise while providing encryption, signing, and authentication services.
Both Luna and Protect Server HSMs extend native HSM functionality by enabling the development and deployment of custom code within the secure confines of the FIPS 140-2 Level 3 validated Thales HSM as a part of the firmware. Functionality Modules (FMs) allow you to customize your Thales HSM’s functionality to suit the needs of your organization, including the implementation of Quantum algorithms.
Luna Cloud HSM Services. In addition to our on-premises HSM solutions, Thales also offers a Luna Cloud HSM solution through Data Protection On Demand (DPoD). DPoD offers an as a service billing model with no hardware to deploy and maintain.
SafeNet Authentication Service (SAS) will substantially reduce your total cost of operation and tailor authentication to meet your unique needs with this fully automated, highly secure authentication-as-a service with flexible token options.
- Blockchain is a distributed database that provides a secure, yet transparent way to make, record and verify any type of transaction.
- Transactions do not have to be financial; they are simply any type of transfer between two parties that typically would require a third party to authenticate each party and broker the exchange.
- Blockchain eliminates the need for centralized control – instead all transactions are decentralized, and verified by the blockchain database itself in the distributed ledger.
- Contrary to the most popular use case, blockchain technologies don’t only secure financial transactions – in fact, they can be used to track and verify any kind of digital asset, as well as code or smart contracts.
Benefits of Blockchain
- Eliminate the need for centralized control and the additional costs
- Trust is distributed between blockchain members
- Transactions are digitally signed using an asset owner public/private key pair
- Once recorded, data in a block cannot be altered retroactively
- Open, distributed ledgers record transactions between two parties efficiently and in a verifiable and permanent way
- Transactions don’t have to be just data – they can also be code or smart contracts
Top 3 Popular Blockchain Use Cases
Risk: Encrypted digital currencies identify the currency itself, but not its owner. Whoever holds the coin's encryption key owns the currency. This means that when a coin is stolen, it's gone—and you have no way of getting it back.
Solution: Storing your encryption keys in a FIPS-validated root of trust is critical to ensuring you own your keys and ultimately your cryptocurrency.
#2 Smart Contracts
Risk: A smart contract is a computer program that describes an agreement with the ability to self-execute and enforce the terms of a contract. If the blockchain is breached, a smart contract can be altered, breaking the trust of the blockchain and removing the ability for two parties to conduct business without the need for a middleman.
Solution: Securely self-execute the terms of a contract with anonymous parties through strong authentication and storing your encryption keys in a hardware root of trust, ensuring the parties are properly identified and that no one can access your data.
#3 Internet of Things (IoT)
Risk: The restrictions imposed by a traditional central-authority trust model have helped make the IoT vulnerable. Most notably Mirai-style botnets, which allowed hackers to easily take over thousands of IoT devices. Only protecting the IoT devices with default passwords allowed hackers to launch Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks.
Solution: Blockchain helps secure the IoT by providing a distributed trust model. The blockchain removes the single-point-of-failure, in turn enabling device networks to protect themselves in other ways, for example by allowing the nodes within a given network to quarantine any nodes that start behaving unusually.
Thales Blockchain Partners
Thales has partnered with industry-leading blockchain and cryptocurrency partners to provide enterprise-grade solutions for securing transactions. Together with partners such as IBM, R3, Ethereum, Hyperledger, Ledger, BitGo, Symbiont and ConsenSys Quorum, Thales is protecting the way industries are conducting business, bringing efficiency and establishing trust. Thales also supports multiple blockchain applications including Bitcoin, Hyperledger, Ethereum, Altcoins, Monero, and more.
Let us help
With all of the uncertainty about blockchain, the abundance of standards and protocols, and moving from a centralized to decentralized platform, getting started with Blockchain is challenging and intimidating at best. Avoid joining the myriad of blockchain organizations that are failing at implementing blockchain technology. Contact Thales to determine how you too can benefit from Blockchain, and learn how Thales’s HSM and SAS solutions can keep your transactions secure.
In our webinar, “Blockchain for payments: Experience on the ground”, we speak to some of the leading operators in the blockchain payments space to learn more about their experience to date and what they see for the future of blockchain payments.