Permissioned Blockchain

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Permissioned Blockchain

What Is a Permissioned Blockchain?

A permissioned blockchain is a distributed ledger that is not available to the general public. Only users with permissions may access it. Users may only conduct activities allowed to them by ledger administrators and must identify themselves using certificates or other digital methods.

Consider adding permissioned users as an additional blockchain security layer. Administrators maintain an access control layer to restrict specific activities to identified participants only. The blockchain keeps track of who is participating in the transactions. This distinguishes permissioned blockchains from public blockchains.

Key Takeaways

  • Permissioned blockchains, which need an access control layer, give an extra degree of protection to traditional blockchain systems like Bitcoin.
  • Entities that need security, identification, and role definition inside the blockchain choose these blockchains.
  • Permissioned blockchains are growing increasingly popular as corporations see their value.

Understanding Permissioned Blockchains

A blockchain may be created and accessed in a variety of ways. Some blockchains need unique rights to read, access, and write data. Others merely need that you be able to connect to the network and do network tasks. The fundamental setup of each blockchain governs the transactions of the participants and determines the duties of each participant in terms of accessing and contributing to the blockchain.

Maintaining the identification of each blockchain member on the network may also be included. Permissioned blockchains are examples of such blockchains.

Difference Between Permissionless and Permissioned Blockchains

Because they employ the same technology, permissioned and permissionless blockchains are comparable. Permissioned blockchains, on the other hand, do not enable users to access the blockchain without identity.

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A bank, for example, may host a permissioned blockchain that tracks money transactions via a certain number of internal nodes. You are unable to access this blockchain because you lack the necessary permissions. In contrast, once you’ve created a semi-anonymous account in a permissionless blockchain, such as a bitcoin mining network, you may join it.

Technically, permissioned blockchain networks with correct design have an access-control layer integrated into the blockchain nodes.

The core workings of blockchains are much the same. The primary distinctions between them are as follows:

  • Enterprise vs. Public use
  • Decentralization
  • Development
  • Transparency

Enterprise vs. Public Use

Bitcoin, the most popular permissionless blockchain cryptocurrency, enables anybody to join in the network as a full node or a contributing miner. Anyone may assume a read-only position on the blockchain or make lawful modifications to it, such as creating a new block or keeping a complete copy of the whole blockchain.

As the usage of blockchain technology grows and matures, more companies and governments are realizing the cost-saving advantages it brings to an organization. As a consequence, permissioned blockchains have grown in popularity among industry-level corporations and organizations that need security, identification, and role definition.

A factory, for example, may employ a permissioned blockchain in conjunction with its supply chain management. Transactions on this blockchain are expected to include logistical partners, lending institutions, and other vendors engaged in the supply and finance operations. Each business would have its own degree of transparency and permissions, which it could use to simplify operations, maintain inventories, and keep track of spending and invoicing.


Permissionless blockchains offer a high degree of decentralization since they allow for more users and can span a much wider network. Permissioned blockchains, on the other hand, have restricted decentralization since they are often utilized for corporate and business reasons, which need varying degrees of centralization.

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Permissionless blockchains are often open source, which implies that they are developed by a community and may be altered and used by anybody. Permissioned blockchains are often private and controlled by the developers or businesses who use them.

Many times, organizations who create or use a “blockchain” do not use a blockchain; instead, they develop a distributed ledger with a consensus method for confirming transactions. It may be difficult to tell the difference since there is no clear definition that clearly distinguishes blockchain from DLT.

A developer creating a permissioned blockchain may choose to make a few chosen data, such as the product name and amount involved in a transaction, publicly accessible. However, only a subset of players has access to the transaction price. Other approaches may involve restricting members to acting as network nodes, hence increasing network security.

This access-control layer handles all permissioning and profile management. These are distinct from un-permissioned or public blockchain networks, which lack a control layer.


Permissionless blockchains are far less transparent since they give users with some anonymity. In general, wallet addresses cannot be traced back to blockchain users, and transactions are encrypted using a variety of cryptographic techniques.

Permissioned blockchains need more openness at some levels since they are used for corporate transactions. Users and their connections are known as nodes, and their transactions are accessible. Among many other advantages, this may protect a corporation from duplicate invoicing, spending, paying, or any other number of problems that might occur when utilizing corporate management software.

What Is a Permissionless and a Permissioned Blockchain?

A permissioned blockchain is used for corporate reasons and needs user authorisation to join, while a permissionless blockchain is utilized for public uses that require less transparency and control.

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What are Permissioned Blockchains Used for?

Permissioned blockchains are often used to manage supply chains, form contracts, and verify payment between parties, among other things.

Can Ethereum be Permissioned?

Many cryptocurrency blockchains are decentralized. Some, like as Etherum, may, however, be further evolved into permissioned blockchains for usage in contexts that demand them.

Investing in cryptocurrencies and other Initial Coin Offerings (“ICOs”) is very dangerous and speculative, and this article is not a suggestion by Investopedia or the author to do so. Because every person’s circumstance is different, a knowledgeable specialist should always be contacted before making any financial choices. Investopedia makes no guarantees or warranties about the accuracy or timeliness of the information provided on this site.

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