Ed Drake

IBM security testing tool targets blockchain enterprises

IBM crack security team X-Force Red has announced a new service for testing blockchain, in the latest offering to emerge for the blockchain sector.

The tech firm said the service would help discover weaknesses and vulnerabilities in blockchain systems. Drawing on the expertise of the X-Force Red division, the service aims to help blockchain operators shore up the security of their networks.

Charles Henderson, global head of IBM X-Force Red, said security testing was essential to ensure blockchain systems were immune from attack.

“While blockchain is a breakthrough for protecting the integrity of data, that does not mean the solutions that leverage it are immune from attackers, which is why security testing is essential during development and after deployment,” Henderson said. “If we look at mobile applications, cloud computing and even personal computers—all these innovations needed to adopt policies and techniques for security after they grew in popularity. Blockchain presents businesses with an opportunity to break that trend.”

According to IBM, much of the security threat with blockchain systems arises from the interface between new technologies and legacy systems.

With the firm notably bullish on the universal role of blockchain over the long-term, IBM says its service is designed to eliminate errors and incompatibilities which can lead to vulnerabilities to hackers and thieves.

IBM anticipates over $10 billion in enterprise blockchain investment by 2021 as the technology becomes more ingrained in global tech infrastructure. However, the firm has highlighted inconsistent and sub-optimal cybersecurity standards, which could leave these systems vulnerable to attack.

Cybersecurity has historically been a significant issue for the sector, with cryptocurrency exchanges in particular vulnerable to hacking and thefts – often as a result of poorly executed cybersecurity.

Most notably, massive hacks like Mt. Gox and Coincheck have left investors substantially out of pocket.

With the rapid expansion of blockchain systems across a huge range of industries and applications, the IBM service aims to eliminate these risks, ensuring a higher standard of security for the emerging blockchain sectors.

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