Friday, 27 May 2016 21:01

VIDEOS INTERVIEW + Q&A: Acronis takes chip off the old blockchain to renew better backup


The world’s first backup and data protection company to use blockchain technology is Acronis, which has launched a prototype of its "tamper-proof data authenticity solution for service providers and businesses".

Masters of the data dominion and the world of hybrid cloud data protection, Acronis have announced a strategic initiative to develop applications of blockchain technology for data protection – and you’ll find interviews with Acronis chief executive Serguei Beloussov, as well as a Q&A session with Beloussov at the press event below.

The media event was prior to the Acronis 2016 APAC Partner Conference, which you can read about here.

Cementing its commitment to blockchain technology, Acronis says it has formed "a dedicated research and development team that is initially focused on delivering ‘tamper-proof’ data storage with verifiable sync and share solutions that leverage Blockchain to guarantee data authenticity, privacy and control".

With many suggesting that blockchain may well be the greater development to have come from the Bitcoin phenomenon, blockchain is certainly groundbreaking technology, providing a record of digital events distributed across different participants or entities.

Indeed, it has the potential to open up a broad range of new data protection use cases for businesses and organisations worldwide, and that’s one of the big reasons why Acronis is so enamoured of the technology.

Given blockchain’s promise of huge potential for the world of data protection, Acronis notes that today's digital world contains a huge number of assets whose originality and ownership are difficult and costly to define and track.

The company says that "blockchain can solve this problem by providing global authenticity and security for data and transactions of any kind, reducing the cost and complexity of centralised systems while making data tamper-proof".

With blockchain, "data and transactions can only be updated by rules of consensus between participants in the system, and when new data is entered, it can never be erased".

So, what is Acronis doing?

More below, including three videos below, an interview with Beloussov, and the Q&A session from the press event prior to the Acronis 2016 APAC Partner Conference, which you can read about here

Acronis says it is taking a "unique and targeted approach at how blockchain can be used to solve specific data protection problems by seeking and developing use cases that exist today".

The company states that "data and transactions that are protected from tampering by blockchain can be used for those use cases where individuals or businesses absolutely must maintain the integrity of the original information". For example, Acronis is extending its data storage solutions and file sync and share solutions with blockchain technology to monitor data integrity and guarantee validity at all times.

What are some examples?

Examples of data that can be protected from tampering using blockchain include property and medical records, stock transfers, chain-of-evidence for court documents, police video or security camera footage, long-term archiving that could be subject to IT audits, and "consortium" data storage, where multiple individuals or entities can securely store and exchange massive amounts of data and information.

Acronis data authentication ‘prototype’ using blockchain now available

As part of the initiative, Acronis has now unveiled a prototype solution to give its service provider partners and end user customers an introduction to the power of blockchain technology for data protection.

The prototype shows an example of how blockchain can be used to verify and protect data with timestamps and certificates of authenticity. By making the prototype available to the public, Acronis is seeking input on potential data protection use cases for blockchain technology.

Acronis says that "participants will be asked for their name and contact info in an effort to better understand the market need and potential of blockchain for data protection".

For more information and to try the prototype, click here

Vitalik Buterin, co-founder of Ethereum and of Bitcoin Magazine– a blockchain technology provider and Acronis partner said: “The potential for Blockchain reaches far beyond Bitcoin transactions with its built-in ability to deliver data protection and authenticity at costs that are dramatically lower than traditional systems.

“By applying Blockchain technology to its solutions, Acronis is the first data protection vendor that we’ve seen embrace this innovative technology to bring new levels of data protection to digital records and transactions.” Serguei Beloussov, Co-Founder and CEO at Acronis said: “When harnessed to its full potential, Blockchain will bring levels of data authenticity, privacy and control to data protection that we have not seen before.

“By exposing real applications, people will start to understand the power and potential uses of Blockchain, and we are excited and confident that Acronis solutions with help unlock its huge potential for data protection.”

So now, onto the videos. First is Beloussov talking blockchain with me prior to the official Acronis blockchain announcement. It's before I knew any of the details of what was to be announced, all of which is detailed above. 

The second video features Beloussov answering questions at a blockchain partner conference press event:

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Alex Zaharov-Reutt

Alex Zaharov-Reutt is iTWire's Technology Editor is one of Australia’s best-known technology journalists and consumer tech experts, Alex has appeared in his capacity as technology expert on all of Australia’s free-to-air and pay TV networks on all the major news and current affairs programs, on commercial and public radio, and technology, lifestyle and reality TV shows. Visit Alex at Twitter here.

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