The ETSI Industry Specification Group on Permissioned Distributed Ledger (ISG PDL) has recently released a number of Reports to support industry and government institutions needs for what is commonly known as blockchain. These Reports cover data record compliance to regulation, application scenarios and smart contracts.
“Most ledgers in ICT have been centralized so far, but the recent approaches based on distributed ledgers provide higher openness and better resiliency”, says Diego Lopez, Chair of ETSI ISG PDL. “Specifications on detailed aspects of PDL are expected to follow soon; they will enable industries to develop interoperable solutions for permissioned distributed ledgers”, adds Raymond Forbes, Vice Chair of ETSI ISG PDL.
ETSI GR PDL 002, “Applicability and compliance to data processing requirements”, describes the implications of the conduits used to connect data sources (sensors, gateways etc.) to distributed ledgers in utility and related industries. The Report also defines how regulatory aspects for data infrastructure security and privacy can be satisfied. An example of the integration of the PDL into the overall ecosystem of a machine shows that this integration provides a safe and reliable environment and secure data exchange between multiple enterprise applications.
ETSI GR PDL 003 details the application scenarios and operational requirements for permissioned ledgers to help telecom operators, Internet and over-the-top service providers implement the technology. It includes provision models with special emphasis on as-a-service paradigms and PDL infrastructure governance aspects.
The latest one, ETSI GR PDL 004, defines an architecture and functional framework for smart contracts and their planning, coding, and testing. The smart contract is a computer program stored in a distributed ledger system. Since smart contracts are mere codes, if they are not well planned, designed, coded and tested, they can leave the system vulnerable to external attacks and internal errors.
The ETSI ISG PDL analyses and provides the foundations for the operation of permissioned distributed ledgers. Permissioned distributed ledgers are more qualified for the business-oriented use cases of industry and governmental institutions, for both technical and legal reasons. On the technical side, PDL enables lower cost and delay for recording a transaction, lower cost of a consensus algorithm, offline operation, and the fairness properties among participants. Legal benefits include the support from external legal agreements or the regulatory enforcement in critical sectors.