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Open accessJournal ArticleDOI: 10.1109/ACCESS.2021.3063152

Blockchains for COVID-19 Contact Tracing and Vaccine Support: A Systematic Review

02 Mar 2021-IEEE Access (IEEE)-Vol. 9, pp 37936-37950
Abstract: Several blockchain projects to help against COVID-19 are emerging at a fast pace, showing the potential of this disruptive technology to mitigate the multi-systemic threats the pandemic is posing on all phases of the emergency management and generate value for the economy and society as a whole. This survey investigates how blockchain technology can be useful in the scope of supporting health actions that can reduce the spread of COVID-19 infections and allow a return to normality. Since the prominent use of blockchains to mitigate COVID-19 consequences are in the area of contact tracing and vaccine/immunity passport support, the survey mainly focuses on these two classes of applications. The aim of the survey is to show that only a proper combination of blockchain technology with advanced cryptographic techniques can guarantee a secure and privacy preserving support to fight COVID-19. In particular, this article first presents these techniques, i.e. zero-knowledge, Diffie Hellman, blind signatures, and proxy re-encryption, then describes how they are used in combination with blockchains to define robust and privacy-preserving solutions. Finally, a brief description of blockchain applications beyond contact tracing and vaccine certification is presented.

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11 results found

Open accessPosted ContentDOI: 10.1101/2021.10.12.21264898
C-E Niculaescu1, Isabel Sassoon1, Ic-L Avila2, Ozlem Colak2  +2 moreInstitutions (2)
19 Oct 2021-medRxiv
Abstract: Preprints are preliminary reports of work that have not been certified by peer review. They should not be relied on to guide clinical practice or health-related behavior and should not be reported in news media as established information.

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Topics: News media (53%), Health belief model (52%)

3 Citations

Open accessJournal ArticleDOI: 10.3390/ELECTRONICS10101219
20 May 2021-Electronics
Abstract: A blockchain is a decentralized peer to peer platform which provides security services based on some key concepts, namely authentication, confidentiality, integrity and authorization. It is the process of recording and keeping track of the resources without the intervention of a centralized authority. This paper provides an overview of blockchains, the structure of blockchains, consensus algorithms, etc., It compares the algorithms based on their utility and limitations. Though blockchains provide secure communication, there are some minimal data leaks which are discussed. Various security issues in blockchains are discussed such as denial of service attacks, etc., In addition to security, some other blockchain challenges are presented like scalability, reliability, interoperability, privacy and consensus mechanisms for integration with AI, IoT and edge computing. This paper also explains about the importance of blockchains in the fields of smart healthcare, smart grid, and smart financial systems. Overall, this paper gives the glimpse of various protocols, algorithms, applications, challenges and opportunities that are found in the blockchain domain.

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Topics: Smart contract (55%), Edge computing (51%), Interoperability (51%)

2 Citations

Open accessJournal ArticleDOI: 10.3390/S21113822
31 May 2021-Sensors
Abstract: Renewable energy microgeneration is rising leading to creation of prosumer communities making it possible to extract value from surplus energy and usage flexibility. Such a peer-to-peer energy trading community requires a decentralized, immutable and access-controlled transaction system for tokenized energy assets. In this study we present a unified blockchain-based system for energy asset transactions among prosumers, electric vehicles, power companies and storage providers. Two versions of the system were implemented on Hyperledger Fabric. Assets encapsulating an identifier or unique information along with value are modelled as non-fungible tokens (NFT), while those representing value only are modelled as fungible tokens (FT). We developed the associated algorithms for token lifecycle management, analyzed their complexities and encoded them in smart contracts for performance testing. The results show that performance of both implementations are comparable for most major operations. Further, we presented a detailed comparison of FT and NFT implementations based on use-case, design, performance, advantages and disadvantages. Our implementation achieved a throughput of 448.3 transactions per second for the slowest operation (transfer) with a reasonably low infrastructure.

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Topics: Smart grid (51%), Database transaction (51%), Demand response (51%) ... read more

2 Citations

Open accessJournal ArticleDOI: 10.1109/ACCESS.2021.3110762
07 Sep 2021-IEEE Access
Abstract: Pandemic and infectious disease outbreaks put pressure on health authorities and require lockdowns. These outbreaks, which strain limited healthcare resources, must be swiftly controlled and monitored. A large number of healthcare authorities are currently investigating automated systems to support outbreak monitoring and control. However, current contact tracing systems face many privacy, participation, and power constraints. Furthermore, elderly or less financially able individuals often cannot participate in automated contact tracing due to not owning a smartphone. This paper proposes a new system that enables health authorities to track exposure among individuals participating in the automated system, aid health authorities in interviewing non-participating individuals, and minimize the processing required by offloading to nearby edge computing devices. The proposed system utilizes edge servers to assist health authorities in tracking users who withdraw from or are unable to use contact tracing. Edge computing devices have access to more contextual information, resulting in minimal data collection and thus enabling businesses, houses, and offices to participate in contact tracing as locations. Edge computing devices enable location-based data collection of contact tracing data using proximity-based sensors for offices, homes, and shops, thereby assisting health authorities to notify users of exposure without disclosing the identities of businesses or individuals. Moreover, the proposed system reduces the overall power for end users up to 97% by delegating contact tracing to nearby edge computing devices. In addition, the system mitigates data poisoning attacks that target individuals’ smartphones, edge devices, or cloud servers by utilizing blockchain to store contacts, delegations, and identities.

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Topics: Edge computing (58%), Edge device (52%), Server (51%)

1 Citations

Open access
01 Jan 2021-
Abstract: The Covid-19 pandemic has pushed companies to the extensive use of digital services, to implement home working and provide online services to people in lockdown. As a consequence, it is interesting to study how this has affected the number, kind and distribution of cybersecurity attacks. This paper gives an empirical evaluation of the cybersecurity attacks at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic in Italy, based on data collected from the questionnaires of the annual Digital Attacks Observatory. It shows that the overall number of attacks has not increased, but attacks have affected smaller companies than before. This can be explained with the fact that the Italian industrial scenario is mostly populated by small and medium enterprises, that have been obliged to a quick reconversion of their IT systems and typically lack the necessary cybersecurity culture. © 2021 Copyright for this paper by its authors. Use permitted under Creative Commons License Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0).

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51 results found

Journal ArticleDOI: 10.1109/TIT.1976.1055638
Whitfield Diffie1, Martin E. Hellman1Institutions (1)
Abstract: Two kinds of contemporary developments in cryptography are examined. Widening applications of teleprocessing have given rise to a need for new types of cryptographic systems, which minimize the need for secure key distribution channels and supply the equivalent of a written signature. This paper suggests ways to solve these currently open problems. It also discusses how the theories of communication and computation are beginning to provide the tools to solve cryptographic problems of long standing.

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Topics: Financial cryptography (60%), Strong cryptography (59%), Key exchange (58%) ... read more

14,068 Citations

Book ChapterDOI: 10.1007/978-1-4757-0602-4_18
David Chaum1Institutions (1)
01 Jan 1983-
Abstract: Automation of the way we pay for goods and services is already underway, as can be seen by the variety and growth of electronic banking services available to consumers. The ultimate structure of the new electronic payments system may have a substantial impact on personal privacy as well as on the nature and extent of criminal use of payments. Ideally a new payments system should address both of these seemingly conflicting sets of concerns.

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Topics: Goods and services (53%), Payment (50%)

3,058 Citations

Open accessProceedings ArticleDOI: 10.5555/296806.296824
Miguel Castro1, Barbara Liskov1Institutions (1)
22 Feb 1999-
Abstract: This paper describes a new replication algorithm that is able to tolerate Byzantine faults. We believe that Byzantinefault-tolerant algorithms will be increasingly important in the future because malicious attacks and software errors are increasingly common and can cause faulty nodes to exhibit arbitrary behavior. Whereas previous algorithms assumed a synchronous system or were too slow to be used in practice, the algorithm described in this paper is practical: it works in asynchronous environments like the Internet and incorporates several important optimizations that improve the response time of previous algorithms by more than an order of magnitude. We implemented a Byzantine-fault-tolerant NFS service using our algorithm and measured its performance. The results show that our service is only 3% slower than a standard unreplicated NFS.

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2,919 Citations

Open accessProceedings ArticleDOI: 10.1145/997817.997857
08 Jun 2004-
Abstract: We present a novel Locality-Sensitive Hashing scheme for the Approximate Nearest Neighbor Problem under lp norm, based on p-stable distributions.Our scheme improves the running time of the earlier algorithm for the case of the lp norm. It also yields the first known provably efficient approximate NN algorithm for the case p

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Topics: Locality-sensitive hashing (60%), Dynamic perfect hashing (57%), Universal hashing (57%) ... read more

2,806 Citations

Open access
01 Jan 2013-
Abstract: The blockchain paradigm when coupled with cryptographically-secured transactions has demonstrated its utility through a number of projects, not least Bitcoin. Each such project can be seen as a simple application on a decentralised, but singleton, compute resource. We can call this paradigm a transactional singleton machine with shared-state. Ethereum implements this paradigm in a generalised manner. Furthermore it provides a plurality of such resources, each with a distinct state and operating code but able to interact through a message-passing framework with others. We discuss its design, implementation issues, the opportunities it provides and the future hurdles we envisage.

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Topics: Smart contract (52%), Cryptocurrency (51%), Database transaction (50%) ... read more

2,750 Citations

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