What do you think of when you think of a blockchain? Unfortunately, many people struggle to grasp what a blockchain is because blockchain is a relatively intangible concept. It is equivalent to asking someone what they think of the internet in the 80s. Without tangible applications, blockchain can be challenging to conceptualize.

One nuance to differing blockchains is the concept of accessibility. The entity that controls (or doesn’t control) the blockchain significantly impacts the functions of the network. This is where public and private blockchains come into play. User access in a blockchain is determined by the type of permissions outlined in the consensus layer.

Public, or permissionless, blockchains make up the majority of popular models today. They are considered public because anyone can view transactions that take place. A single enterprise does not control the network; it is open to anyone.

In a public blockchain, any user can fully access the blockchain’s technology with an anonymous identity. This is seen with Ethereum, where organizations can use the public blockchain fundamentals to build programs to meet their needs. Users’ identities are tied to their wallet addresses to perform actions.

When to use public blockchains

Data on a public blockchain is safe because it is impossible to alter once it has been confirmed. Public blockchains allow for transparency, decentralization, security, and user-friendliness.

These systems are excellent for cryptocurrencies, public information, and groups looking for extremely decentralized options. As a result of public blockchains being accessible by anyone, no one entity would have the ability to shut the network down. In addition, public blockchains are very secure and very well known.

When not to use public blockchains

On the other hand, because anyone can access the transactions stored on public blockchains anonymously, they are not the best choice for organizations looking to create a closed network with their blockchain integrations or looking to keep track of which user is performing which action. Public blockchains also tend to be slower than their private counterparts, posing a risk of congestion.

Understanding these nuances of blockchain technology will help business leaders determine the best course of action to take for their blockchain demands. In addition, the HELO™ Blockchain will merge features of both public and private blockchains, creating a customizable solution for any business, organization, or individual.

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