I have seen examples of people using public blockchains to store data of all types, everything from basic text to photos and music, encoded into fake addresses.

This got me thinking.. about a potential application of a private blockchain, used solely for the purpose of storing important data in a distributed (say across a company's LAN) and cryptographically secure manner.

How could one accomplish this while keeping as much of the core infrastructure of a currency's blockchain in tact but also while removing the unnecessary bits? For example, none of the coinbase inputs/outputs would be required, nor would difficulty re-targeting or anything relative to hashrate since the only "incentive" for mining would be to store the data you wish to store on the blockchain. Would the data be mined into a block on demand, or would there be a "trusted" miner to do this with all data in the memory pool at a given interval? Would there need to be a special ancillary program to decrypt the data for a given block using a typical public/private key pair and a specification of file type, or would there be markers in the "transaction ID" or other data within the block that would aid in this?

I know there are many questions here, and I understand there are already applications that are meant solely to store data on a blockchain, but I guess what I am really wondering is how many of the key components of a cryptocurrency's blockchain would carry over to this application of blockchain technology.

  • 2
    Private blockchain run by a company to store arbitrary data? Sounds like a job for a regular old database to me.
    – chytrik
    Commented Jul 5, 2018 at 19:01
  • Not arbitrary data, data that the company wants especially secure, intentionally heavily obfuscated, more so than is possible by any traditional method of storage for every imaginable file type. And this is a hypothetical, obviously, so I was looking for a "humor me" answer. It doesn't need to be thought of solely from the prospective of a commercial implementation, nor does it need to be compared to traditional methods. Commented Jul 5, 2018 at 21:12
  • What makes you think traditional methods are less secure, or less obfuscate-able? Blockchain does not offer a revolution in either of those areas. This isn't to say a better database system cannot be invented, but I'm not sure that a blockchain is a good starting point for doing so.
    – chytrik
    Commented Jul 5, 2018 at 21:53
  • I guess the only thing I can think of is that traditional methods would be more visually recognizable. I mean I understand that just encrypting a file using a large enough key pair can make it essentially unhackable, but even someone with adept computer-science knowledge would have a difficult time discerning what it was they were even looking at with a private blockchain if they weren't familiar with the technology. The actual data within the blocks would be almost invisible to the untrained eye but easily accessible/query-able for those who know how to use it. Commented Jul 5, 2018 at 23:43
  • Check out en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steganography for ideas on how to obfuscate data
    – chytrik
    Commented Jul 6, 2018 at 3:19


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