Blockchain technology is famous for its high level of security and the military grade encryption. Unless there is a huge breakthrough in quantum computing, current processing technology is too weak to break through the tough security it offers.
Blockchain is penetrating every aspect of our lives and firms from all over the world are using it, from keeping track of products to insurance. However, one of the most vulnerable systems in the online world is ignored: emails.
Emails have been around for more than half a century now and is still one of the most used formal communications channels. There are more than 3 billion email users around the globe, which is more than 40% of the human population. One would think that this channel should have security at par to ward of typical scams, attacks and frauds. The case is not so.
With 320 billion emails zipping around online per day, a 2019 report shows that one in every 99 email is a phishing attack. Phishing is a very common method of gaining personal access to different user accounts and bank credentials, including access to the email accounts. Phishing is done be perpetrating to be an official from either the email service provider itself or another firm, requiring the email reader to either give up different information such as login credentials, bank passwords, credit card information etc. unknowingly manually or through a fake website.
Back in 2016, more than 272 million emails accounts and password data were offered for sale through different darkweb platforms. A more recent example is the exploitation of Microsoft Exchange server where the hackers gained not only access to the email service, but were in control of it through administrative rights, able to copy whatever data and private information they wanted.
The outside security threat aside, email users are not even safe from their providers. Gmail, one of the most used email service in the world, kept a close eye on emails coming and going from their users’ inboxes, scanning and reading each one to build up a profile so that it could better target ads in a blatant and complete disregard to their users’ privacy.
How is one to protect self when even the email service providers are either not safe or are in on the game?
Decentralized Emails to the Rescue
Blockchain’s security lies in the fact that it is a decentralized system. Rather than have a single authority and a server which controls all the aspects of any service, there are hundreds and thousands of nodes and miners which validate any data movements and access. Working in conjunction, a specific amount of validators must agree on the authenticity of a request. Since there is not one, but multiple points that authorize it, it is impossible to manipulate the network by bad actors.
Then there is the encryption. An outsider without authorization can intercept and even copy data, but without the decryption possible, the malicious party can never make heads or tails of the data, rendering it useless.
With the security and privacy taken care of, the second point to consider is how to make sure there are no phishing attempts. The wallet addresses in a blockchain system are practically more than enough to serve decades of use and similarly, near unlimited email addresses can be created. People can create disposable emails when they don’t want their contact to be shared with others, making it impossible for phishers to know about you and send you fraudulent emails.
What Blockchains Need to Have
There are a trio of factors that any blockchain must achieve before it can be used for decentralized email systems.
- Speed: Scalability is a big issue in blockchain these days. With millions of emails being sent per day, even the most scalable of all blockchain today falls short to meet the criteria. Secondly, the TPS (Transaction Per Second) speed needs to be higher. Faster blocks, quicker TPS is the combination in need.
- Security: Though blockchain are secure, the initial phase is the most vulnerable. Having a lower hashrate in the early days will make it extremely vulnerable to a 51% attack.
- Sustainable: The most advanced blockchain use PoW consensus that is power hungry. A practical PoS with extreme decentralization must be built.
WSUM Decentralized Emails
WSUM, a platform already made famous for its innovative use of smart contracts and efficient systems for wrapped token service, has already started to work on a blockchain email system that has all of the above features.
It will be fast, secure and free from privacy violation issues, making sending and receiving emails a breeze without the worry of your data being stolen or phished. WSUM plans to integrate an instant messaging feature in it for communication in real time. The platform has plans to launch its service the 2021.