It is undeniable that one of our feet has entered the era of intelligent alliance of all things, but there are still some obstacles to the other foot. The emergence of blockchain technology will promote the development of this process.
“Hello, master. I’m Xiao Q. it’s 08:29 in the morning. It’s time to go to work!”
“Smart door lock”
“Master, you hurt me. You are always in such a hurry. Get up early next time!”
“On board equipment”
“There is an ugly camera in front of you. I advise you to slow down, or I can’t save you!”
“Smart vending machine”
“This is your favorite sandwich every day. Please enjoy it to help you start an energy filled day!”
People 50 years ago may not have thought that people in the future will be so closely connected with so many small objects (Internet of things smart terminal devices), cities, communities, homes, travel, medical treatment, payment… Internet of things devices are everywhere. The concept of the Internet of things originated from Bill Gates’s book the way forward (published in 1995). At that time, it was not valued because of the immature ecological development of the Internet of things such as sensing equipment, network and hardware. The Chinese Academy of Sciences also launched the research on “sensor network (Internet of things)” as early as 1999. Until 2005, the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) held the World Summit on the information society in Tunisia (WSIS) released ITU Internet Report 2005: Internet of things, which formally put forward the concept of “Internet of things (IOT).
Why is the Internet of things so hot? Because the Internet of things has brought us a new dimension of information communication: communication between people and things, and between things. The three-dimensional integration mode of people, things and the Internet has caused earth shaking changes in our lives. The fact is the same. After about 20 years of development, the Internet of things has blossomed in many industries such as smart home, smart city, industrial Internet of things, Internet of vehicles, energy and medical treatment, The equipment scale has reached 10 billion, and the market scale has reached trillions. Moreover, the application of the Internet of things system has also moved from closed-loop and fragmentation to openness, scale and intelligence… Entering the era of smart alliance of all things has brought us a rich and beautiful life. However, behind all this beauty, there are still many hidden dangers: security problems, mutual trust problems Expansion… This article will take you to understand the stumbling blocks that hinder the development of the Internet of things.
Under the Internet of things: better convenience is accompanied by higher risk
The ecosystem of the Internet of things system is usually divided into the roles of equipment service provider, business operator, safety supervisor and user (some equipment service providers and operation service providers are provided by one organization, such as coke company selling coke vending machines at the same time). Without losing generality, the Internet of things business platform under the ecology is usually used as the “central control brain” to connect and manage Internet of things applications, services, equipment and data. Most of these business platform services are provided by the enterprise’s data center.
Picture 1 ecological role relationship chain of traditional Internet of things
In the process of multi-party operation and use, because Internet of things devices are often distributed at the edge of the network, data is stored in terminal devices, but they rely on centralized services for unified processing, which will lead to different degrees of dual end problems and risks at the user end and service end:
Figure 2 dual end risks of use and service under the traditional Internet of things
▲ user end
Is your Internet of things device secure? The wide application of the Internet of things liberates manpower and improves efficiency, but at the same time, unmanned operation gives malicious attackers an opportunity to become the object of botnets (botnets are unknowingly implanted in Internet of things devices). Moreover, most of the user data is deposited on the terminal. If a malicious attacker destroys the terminal equipment, steals, tampers and forges our information, or even destroys the data center behind it, how should we deal with it?
Is your information privacy guaranteed? The core of the Internet of things is tens of thousands of user information and behavior data. Due to the large number of devices, scattered distribution and difficult supervision, personal privacy data is exposed to risks, and the centralized management structure can not prove its innocence. The leakage of personal privacy data occurs from time to time.
Are devices trusted? At present, most of the Internet of things are self-organizing networks within operators and enterprises. When it comes to the cooperation between multiple operators and multiple peer entities, the cost of establishing credit is very high. Due to the trust cost, users have a poor experience between different terminal devices, and behind the equipment credibility problem is the credibility problem between institutions, which will lead to a large cooperation cost in the actual operation process.
Expansion and performance of massive devices: the current data flow of the Internet of things is summarized into a single central control system. In the near future, the Internet of things devices will grow exponentially to a scale of 100 million. At this time, how to bear the cost of centralized services, how to deal with centralized faults and how to ensure performance will be a very difficult problem, We need to find a way to reduce the cost of centralization.
Centralized service equipment Island: according to incomplete statistics, there are tens of thousands of Internet of things enterprises around the world. Each Internet of things platform lacks unified technical standards and communication interfaces. The formation of “equipment island” will hinder users from using multiple IOT platforms, and hinder the development of interconnection of all things and sharing economy.
The arrival of blockchain: make devices credible, data secure and value flow!
If there are obstacles, there will be ways to break through them. Introduce our protagonist today: blockchain. Blockchain can help the Internet of things create a secure and trusted ecological closed loop from device end to service end: make the device have trusted identity, ensure the security of the whole data link, and promote multi-party value cooperation!
Figure 3 Internet of things application architecture based on blockchain
The blockchain based Internet of things application architecture is a decentralized business platform. It has changed from a centralized service mode to a multi node distributed deployment service mode, which can carry out good fault tolerance and expansion. It can support a variety of distributed services and devices, such as Internet of things devices, Internet of things servers, Internet of things gateways, service gateways and end-user devices; You can use the did distributed digital identity to identify the equipment, and use the same set of did protocol to break through the barriers between the equipment; The business logic can be written to the chain in the form of smart contract for automatic execution and processing. The mode is flexible and can effectively promote the cooperation among multiple devices, roles and institutions in the distributed mode.
▲ make the device have trusted identity
The “child abuse incident in red, yellow and blue kindergarten” in 2017 still makes people shudder in retrospect. At that time, the camera was damaged, resulting in great resistance and disputes in the follow-up investigation and handling of the case, as well as other IOT equipment. Once the equipment fails, it is difficult to trace back the source and verify the data. In the face of these thorny problems, the blockchain can give each terminal device an “identity” by means of digital identity, that is, a unique, physical level and tamper proof identity certificate is embedded in the security chip inside the device, which can effectively prevent malicious nodes from accessing and doing evil, Moreover, the information transmitted through such terminal equipment will have an “identity”, so that we can verify whether the equipment is trusted and whether the data has been tampered with, so as to have a targeted problem and investigate and treat it in time.
Figure 4 device flow and data flow in the Internet of things scenario
▲ ensure the safety of the whole data link
The problem of equipment source is solved, and the safety of the whole data link can not be ignored. In the ecological scenario of blockchain Internet of things, cryptographic privacy protection strategies such as digital signature, symmetric / asymmetric encryption, tee and zero knowledge proof will be adopted to encrypt data in the whole process of data collection (data source “first kilometer”) – transmission storage, and the special consensus mechanism and block chain storage structure of blockchain will be used to ensure data consistency and non repudiation, It helps to build a verifiable and traceable electronic evidence storage certificate, make users feel at ease in the storage and use of information, greatly improve the security of user data and privacy, and ensure that the source can be checked, the destination can be traced and the responsibility can be investigated.
▲ promote multi value collaboration
Different from other business scenarios, the Internet of things has many participating roles, diverse equipment and rich coverage scenarios. For any party, how to achieve multi-party cooperation, create maximum value with the lowest cost and provide users with high-quality services is a problem that every participant needs to think about. In this regard, blockchain has given two doses of good medicine in terms of technical architecture and application services: “multi centralized service architecture” and “self executing smart contract”. The polycentric nature of the blockchain allows multiple participants to cooperate fairly and allow various types of equipment and information to flow in the unified blockchain network, which helps to break the shackles of multiple information islands existing in the Internet of things, establish mutual trust at low cost and promote the horizontal flow of information and value exchange, At the same time, the multi-level distributed architecture of the blockchain also greatly reduces the high operation and maintenance cost of the centralized architecture.
The smart contract on the blockchain can well solve the problem of “interest disputes” in multi-party cooperation. When you sell content, services, products and other resources on other platforms (e.g. we media, consulting and chartering), the voice and data rights are controlled by the platform side. How to split accounts transparently and how to deal with disputes is a very difficult problem. The blockchain takes advantage of the characteristics that its data is difficult to tamper with and the smart contract is automatically executed without human intervention, The account sharing method or contract can be written into the smart contract in the business scenario. If someone buys a bottle of water at the vending machine, the smart contract will automatically run on the chain when the transaction occurs, distribute the accounts to stakeholders according to the agreement, and each party can query the data on the chain to achieve transparent account sharing and eliminate flying orders and fraud.
This paper introduces the concept and problems of the Internet of things, as well as the value and application of blockchain combined with the Internet of things. In the near future, fun chain technology will explore more “blockchain + IOT” products in smart communities, smart cities, industrial Internet of things, energy, medical and other industries, use the power of blockchain to help IOT development, realize from IOT (Internet of things) to BOT (blockchain of things), pay attention to us, Help you step into the new era of intelligent interconnection built by blockchain Internet of things!
Want to know the difference between traditional IOT devices and “blockchain + IOT” devices? Want to know how the blockchain IOT ecological technology is designed? Welcome to the follow-up tweet series of “blockchain + IOT” of interest chain.
Introduction to the author
Product director of fun chain technology basic platform Department
Responsible for business related to blockchain underlying products and blockchain + IOT products
 Bill Gates, the road to the future
 ITU International Telecommunication Union ITU Internet Report 2005: Internet of things
 Gan Zhixiang. Research on the origin and development background of the Internet of things [J]. Modern economic information, 2010 (01): 158 + 157
 The Supreme Procuratorate and the Supreme People’s Procuratorate severely punished typical cases of crimes involving Xinguan vaccine according to law https://www.spp.gov.cn/spp/xw…
 China Communications Standardization Association. White paper on the application and development of “Internet of things + blockchain” (2019)