Government agencies are looking further into adopting blockchain technology and bitcoin. They hope to commandeer these protocols in order to protect the military from mass-hacking campaigns, counterintelligence, and otherwise hostile attacks on their systems. The Pentagon has especially shown recent interest in using cryptographically-guarded blockchains to aid their operations.
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An August 17 Washington Times post elaborated on why governments need blockchain tech. It read, “Particularly alarming to U.S. defense analysts are Chinese intelligence collection operations aimed at commercial transactions, which have been highlighted as a growing threat to U.S. national security with the American military personnel, national security decision-makers and critical infrastructure entities increasingly targeted.”
Government Experimentation with Blockchains
The Pentagon and other agencies hope to use blockchain technology to take advantage of its tamper-resistant and immutable features. They believe these qualities can prevent malicious actors from either stealing their information, ransoming them, or eavesdropping. They also believe it will cut costs over the long term. This is why they have started to experiment with different implementations of various blockchain protocols.
The Washington Times article suggests the Pentagon and NATO have been working in secrecy to determine how best to utilize blockchain. NATO is particularly interested in making their intelligence processes more efficient, including financing and logistical work.
The Pentagon and U.S. NATO allies have been moving discreetly but aggressively in recent months to develop military-related apps exploiting the capabilities of blockchain. NATO is considering the technology to improve efficiencies across such traditional processes as logistics, procurement and finance.
DARPA and Blockchain Usage
The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) also appears to have taken an interest in blockchain technology. They have currently been interested in developing a blockchain-based messaging application. The goal of this project is for them to have a secure platform to send encoded messages to operatives in combat situations. Furthermore, according to various sources, DARPA has interest in creating “unhackable” code for use with blockchain. This would allegedly help expose hackers who attack them.
A Foundation for Defense of Democracies memo expanded on DARPA’s goals, citing different attack vectors. It discusses a variety of ways that malicious actors could attack the United States. The memo also explored what would happen if the United States failed to act against these threats.
The cost of inaction is great. While we laud the recent focus on supply chain security problems of the defense industrial base (DIB), we endorse a broader notion of the range of U.S. interests threatened by this phenomenon…In a conflict scenario, the collapse of the domestic economy would not only degrade national morale but disrupt the primary source of material support for U.S. forces.
Government Believes Blockchain Can Guarantee More Security
With these threats on the radar, government believes their greatest ally might be blockchain technology. They think they can prevent their supply chains from being interrupted by placing their sensitive documentation on the blockchain. However, it is presently unclear how exactly various agencies will implement blockchain and bitcoin to further their agenda.
What do you think about government moving into the blockchain space? Is it good or bad? Let us know your opinions in the comments below.
Images via Shutterstock, dfas.mil, and Wikipedia/DARPA
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