Blockchain-based Personal Data Management: From Fiction to Solution
2019 IEEE 18th International Symposium on Network Computing and Applications (NCA)
The emerging blockchain technology has enabled various decentralised applications in a trustless environment without relying on a trusted intermediary. It is expected as a promising solution to tackle sophisticated challenges on personal data management, thanks to its advanced features such as immutability, decentralisation and transparency. Although certain approaches have been proposed to address technical difficulties in personal data management; most of them only provided preliminary
... logical exploration. Alarmingly, when utilising Blockchain for developing a personal data management system, fictions have occurred in existing approaches and been promulgated in the literature. Such fictions are theoretically doable; however, by thoroughly breaking down consensus protocols and transaction validation processes, we clarify that such existing approaches are either impractical or highly inefficient due to the natural limitations of the blockchain and Smart Contracts technologies. This encourages us to propose a feasible solution in which such fictions are reduced by designing a novel system architecture with a blockchain-based "proof of permission" protocol. We demonstrate the feasibility and efficiency of the proposed models by implementing a clinical data sharing service built on top of a public blockchain platform. We believe that our research resolves existing ambiguity and take a step further on providing a practically feasible solution for decentralised personal data management.