Crypto Glossary

Proof-of-Immutability (PoIM)

Proof-of-Immutability (PoIM) is a novel blockchain architecture designed to protect data privacy in a distributed network. PoIM enables the blockchain to persist data in a decentralized and provably immutable manner, without having to distribute the data among nodes.

What Is Proof-of-Immutability (PoIM)?

Proof-of-Immutability (PoIM) is a type of blockchain system that utilizes a sophisticated hash-based approach to store blockchain metadata in a remote hash vault. A PoIM-powered blockchain network upholds the highest data privacy standards, as the data appended to the ledger is not copied and distributed among network nodes, rather, a hash pointer with no traceable metadata is. This approach also empowers a blockchain to scale and attain high throughput without hurting its decentralized nature. 

The PoIM system allows participants of the blockchain network to inspect the trustworthiness of one another’s data (by proving its immutability), at any time, without invading the inspected party’s data privacy. This mechanism for proving immutability may sound redundant at first, as immutability is perceived to be something inherent to all blockchains. Indeed, blockchain as a distributed ledger technology enjoys a higher level of immutability compared to centralized database systems, however, the degree of immutability varies among different blockchains, depending on factors such as consensus mechanism and the size of membership. For example, a permissioned/private blockchain network is usually smaller in size and therefore easier to manipulate. PoIM provides a mechanism that allows participants to check whether the chain has been manipulated or a piece of record has been altered, without accessing the database. In addition, as real-world adoption gains speed, an auditing mechanism for validating information integrity within the blockchain ledger plays a key role in propelling the legal recognition of blockchain data and smart contracts.

Note: PoIM is invented by ParallelChain Lab. Its processes and methods have been applied for patents (US-2021-0297265-A1; US-2021-0218549-A1; EP3848845; CN2021102000629400). PoIM had its first implementation on ParallelChain Private. It is expected to be implemented in “Inter-ParallelChain Communication” to satisfy the trust and data privacy protection requirements for permissioned and permissionless networks to interoperate in the Web3 ecosystem.

Author: Ian Huang, Founder & CEO of ParallelChain Lab

Ian Huang is an infrastructure technologist, with career journey included Tektronix, Northrop Grumman, Shugart, DEC and Hughes Network Systems. Ian also contributed to the inventions of real-time multi-tasked OS, semiconductor design, dataflow & reduced instruction set CPU designs, multi-threaded I/O, deterministic and stochastic network protocol, and integration of synchronized and asynchronized systems, in TekDOS, Priority Sectoring Processor for the USAF A-10 Thunderbolt, SCSI, RISC, FDDI, ATM Switch and Ethernet/VPN Switch.

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