Blockchain is fast achieving strategic importance for defence, and budgets are pouring into this technology with a view to gaining that all-important strategic edge.
As reported in Defence News, China is seriously investing into blockchain technology with the aim of leveraging supply chain management, smart contracts, asymmetric encryption and consensus algorithms.
China sees blockchain technology as providing an edge in intelligence, and the overall management of weapons and personnel in warfare. It also sees itself as becoming a leader in blockchain technology at the expense of its competitors, such as the US.
The Chinese Premier, Xi Jinping wants to use blockchain to win “a new industrial advantage”. Last year, the State Information Center of China, together with various private Chinese companies, set up a blockchain-based service network (BSN), which could offer the Chinese the capability to monitor American citizens’ activity in markets.
Russia have also been researching into blockchain technology and in particular the military applications for cyber defence systems.
Both Russia and China continue to send large numbers of delegates to blockchain forums, prompting a representative of the Russian intelligence agency (FSB) to pronounce:
“the Internet belongs to the Americans — but blockchain will belong to us.”
A 2020 report from the Value Technology Foundation, IBM, Amazon and Deloitte stated that if the US does not increase spending on blockchain research then it could fall behind its competitors and leave itself open to cyberattacks.
The report goes on to say that the current, fairly negative view of cryptocurrencies in the US creates a difficult regulatory regime for blockchain applications. Instead, the US should look to join with its allies such as Australia and the UK, in order to think more strategically about the defence and economic implications of blockchain.
If blockchain is supposed to be the next internet, then the US needs to pay far closer attention to this technology.
Disclaimer: This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.