Blockchain enable secure, immutable, and auditable data streaming

Blockchain enables a secure digital twin. The underlying components are secure real-time data streams through blockchain security, predictive failure, object detection, 3d models, process analytics, and remote operations.
by Syed Bari
Mar 12, 2021

Blockchain enables a secure digital twin. The underlying components are secure real-time data streams through blockchain security, preditcive failure, object detection, 3d models, process analytics, and remote operations.



Transcript:

Stephen LaMarca:

Syed Bari, the founder of BDATA Solutions. Syed, are you here with us?

Syed Bari:

Yes. Can you guys hear me?

Stephen LaMarca:

I can hear you just fine. Awesome.

Kyle Saleeby:

Welcome. It's great to have you.

Stephen LaMarca:

There you are.

Syed Bari:

Thank you.

Stephen LaMarca:

All right. You comfortable with just jumping right into it?

Syed Bari:

Yes, for sure.

Stephen LaMarca:

[crosstalk 00:00:24] All right, man, take it away.

Syed Bari:

Let me know when you guys can see my screen.

Stephen LaMarca:

We got it. Perfect.

Syed Bari:

Thank you, AMT team, for this exciting opportunity. So as you know, my name is Syed Zeeshan Bari. I'm joining in here from Toronto, Canada. I'm the founder of BDATA Solution. We are a technology company out of Toronto. We work with industries to help them in achieving digital transformation initiative. We help companies to provide them a secure digital trend that'd be defined as an exact replica of on-site facility.

Syed Bari:

In today presentation, we will have a quick, brief about the company and then we will jump into the problem and the solution. I will give you a quick demo of the technology as well as go into our technology use cases.

Syed Bari:

By trade, I'm an engineer. I had previously started in crypto mining, which I sold and now combining my knowledge in blockchain and engineering for Industry 4.0 initiatives. My co-founder Owen Wang has degree in Computer Sciences and Electrical Engineering from Queen's University, and have eight years experience working with Siemens here in Canada. Thomas Lichtenberger is our technology advisor. He worked previously as a Festo Didactic CEO in North America and has over 25 years of experience in transforming manufacturing facilities.

Syed Bari:

Anthony [Amenga 00:01:57] is our VP of sales and marketing with previous experience in delivering highly complex digital transformation projects for Baker Hughes. Overall, we are a team of professional engineers, AI, machine learning, and blockchain developers and researchers.

Syed Bari:

Our unique approach of applying blockchain or distributed ledger technology to secure data and provide an exact replica of on-site facility in the form of digital twin is being appreciated in many global competition. We won Rogers 5G cybersecurity competition. Rogers is a large telecom company here in Canada and the first one to roll out the 5G connectivity. We won Ontario Government Fund for 5G Remote Operation Use Case. We also won Industry 4.0 Global Technology Competition organized by the Singapore government, as well as few other highly competitive global awards.

Syed Bari:

Today, companies are very clear, as you might have noticed in the previous presentations, about the benefits and the need of digital transformation. They fully understand that at least they can save 10 to 40% of operation and maintenance cost, and that can be reduced by having a digital transformation of their facility. But the biggest concern that you might have noticed in the previous presentation were highlighted as basically the cybersecurity.

Syed Bari:

The worry of being hacked or ransomed by a bad actor is slowing down the digital transformation initiative. Cyber attacks are increasing at a very high pace. In May 2020, actually, U.S. government declared a national emergency due to the increase in the cyber attacks on critical infrastructure. Recently, during November, December 2020, there was a huge ransomware attack on a US-based major IoT device manufacturing infrastructure, where reportedly a hacker converted all the data into libraries, which could only be retrieved once ransom of 750 bitcoin is paid into the hacker's crypto wallet. The amazing thing is crypto wallet is so secure that the transaction cannot be even traced where this money is paid or used.

Syed Bari:

Hackers totally understand that IoT data hack might not be the biggest paying point for companies. That's why now hackers are challenging companies by hacking their entire skele-system and remotely operate the facility to cause a risk to the life of millions of people around there. Since the beginning of this month, we had another attack, this time on Oldsmar water treatment facility in Florida, where hackers attacked on the control system and remotely increased the chemical level, and tried to poison the entire water supply to Florida City on the top of the financial losses that could heavily cost precious lives. This is obviously not a first attack. Previously, there have been many attacks such as cyber attack on the Bowman Dam in New York where the hackers remotely open the Bowman Dam doors to cause heavy water spill during the facility shut down. A German steel mill cyber attack, where hackers attempt to shut down the facility.

Syed Bari:

The point that we are trying to make here is that cyber attacks are not only about hacking the data or causing financial damage. They can cause huge risk to the people around. That's why we propose companies to choose distributed ledger or blockchain technology instead of VPN technology or centralized data streaming technology like MQTT. VPN technology was developed long ago in 1970s when processor speed were very slow and the cracking password were considered an impossible task. VPN is outdated and the reason it's because companies need two-factor authentication to cover up their security gaps in VPN technology. If a person got a message on his mobile and he read it via his identity to get the access. But this is not a solution because problem was never an identity. The problem is the middleware. In other words, the middleman who is solely responsible to authenticate the connectivity. Losing middleware means losing the entire security network.

Syed Bari:

However, in blockchain, there is no middleman. It's a distributed responsibility of all the devices on the network to authenticate each other. That's mean upon successful authentication, device can only be enrolled to the network and it's chained in the data.

Syed Bari:

In the VPN technology, there is no trust developed within the network of the devices. The trust is developed only between the individual devices and the middleware. There is no immutability of the data. That's mean all the data can be added, delete, or modified by a person who hacked the middleware.

Syed Bari:

So to conclude it, VPN has a lot of security gaps and technology is totally outdated and not providing an industrial level cyber security. That's why you will always see these kind of question arising whenever somebody is presenting the digital solution.

Syed Bari:

As BDATA, we offer three solution, which we sell separately or in a bundle, depends on the use cases. We provide BIoT SDK, which can be easily deploy on the devices. This work as embedded security, which is stream the data from static asset, such as machine arms, ROBOTC. Companies can manage device boards to avoid the physical data breach as well. So it comes with the remote device management, as well as the secure data delivery.

Syed Bari:

We also have the BIoTs [inaudible 00:08:03] SIM card. Those are designed for the moving assets, such as drone, electric vehicles, where the ad data streaming and the asset location is sensitive.

Syed Bari:

The third solution that we have is basically the combination of first two, where we basically securely deliver the data and the second portion of the digital twin is basically using the data to provide the valuable information out of that analytics.

Syed Bari:

Digital twin, basically design for manufacturing and process industries, where they can have an exact replica of their on-site facility with remote monitor or securely remote operation the facility.

Syed Bari:

So now the question is how BIoT technology works? BIoT has many components, every SIM card, device, equipment, sensors, robotic arms is connected while the BIoT technology has a cryptographic secure digital identity. 24/7 identity is basically being authenticated by the distributed network of the devices. 51% devices, SIM cards on the network, authenticate the connectivity and this device can stream the data upon developing successful consensus among the devices.

Syed Bari:

The data is recorded in the ledger. Once the consensus are developed, then the data is recorded in the ledger. At that point, data achieved the immutability. That's mean the data can be trusted for remote operation or monitoring use cases. In other word, all the devices can be trusted to stream data to each other and program for within factory or to global automation. All the global [inaudible 00:09:52] factory automation is written in the form of smart contracts, which is containing process control logics. All of this is cryptographically chained that means each issued block on data is containing the stamp of previously issued block or the data that make it very secure.

Syed Bari:

In the end, all of the data is trained and stored in the form of binaries, hashes, which make us even more secure. The beautiful thing is all of this happening. That's mean that developing consensus among the device data streaming [hashes storing 00:10:27]. All of these happening within the milliseconds. That's mean 10 milliseconds. This make this technology fully aligned to scale up with the 5G technology to benefit the low latency data streaming and secure connectivity altogether.

Syed Bari:

Now the question is how the IoT is different from accessing data streaming technology, such as MQTT. Here we are demonstrating the difference between typically used MQTT protocol, which is centralized control as you might have hear in the previous presentation. In MQTT protocol, as you can see data is visible and not secure, however in BIoT technology, all the data is secured being a stream in the form of hashes with low latency and not visible. Data is chained from the device, develop the consensus on the device, on the network within milliseconds and upon successful consensus development, data is recorded in the ledger provide immutability. That mean, now the data can be trusted for remote operation on monitoring.

Syed Bari:

So at this point, by using the IoT technology, we have demonstrated secure data streaming. Now the question is how we can effectively use this data to provide financial benefits to the organization by having realtime, data cleaning, predictive analytics, or AI driven image detection, or that we provide a [inaudible 00:12:04] blockchain enable secure and highly customizable digital twin track. Here, you can see that all the devices and the arms connected to the network can be managed remotely and the data is streaming in the form of hashes. You can see the data timestamp between the devices is in the 10 milliseconds

Syed Bari:

Upon the successful transaction, then the data will be streamed into the analytics platform where we can see that data can be basically used for the predictive analytics. There are the six core technology that we have incorporated in our digital twin, which allow industry to have a fully customized one solution to meet all their needs. As we briefly discussed, we have [inaudible 00:12:54] blockchain to drive basically to secure connectivity and machine learning, to have a predictive analytics.

Syed Bari:

In our blockchain solution, we provide machine to machine secure connectivity. That's mean, all the machine on the network, authenticate each other, develop consensus and record that in the ledger. We have also incorporated machine learning, driven predictive failure, where basically we provide 48-hour advanced notification for any problem that we find in the data. So that's basically help companies to avoid the equipment failure or unplanned downtime.

Syed Bari:

We have also incorporated object detection using artificial intelligence and deep learning on video streaming fetched from on-site CCTV cameras. That's mean, our AI module doesn't need any specific expensive CCTV cameras.

Syed Bari:

In our AI module, we detect the product faults, fire, person, PPE to name a few use cases. Our AI module is highly customizable. That's mean we can modify detection use case as what the customer need. All we need is basically 300 to 500 pictures of the object that we need to train in our model to automatically detect through the AI video streaming.

Syed Bari:

In our solution, at my end, you might have noticed we have provided the 3D model and the reason for providing the 3D model because the manufacturing facility and the process plant are very complex environment. It's very difficult to monitor those facilities in a basically [inaudible 00:14:42]. So that's why we have provided 3D model analytics, where basically customer goes right on the top of the equipment, and get the data right there.

Syed Bari:

We have also incorporate many calculation that provide the real-time analytics such as for the machines. We have provided the vibration calculations where we basically connect the vibration sensors and provide the analytics for the predictive failure.

Syed Bari:

Our digital twin is capable of providing 5G enabled remote operation for low latency and the secure data streaming.

Syed Bari:

Digital transformation, as you might know, is a very complex subject and it doesn't happen over the night. So we have developed a proven step-by-step approach to all companies in achieving highest return on investment. Initially on the first stage, our business analysts basically worked with the companies to interview the core stakeholders and audience such as, we interview the operators and the maintenance people and management team. We gather all the use case and the need and targeted return on the investment. Based on that, we prepare a roadmap and it takes around two to four weeks to meet the company core objective.

Syed Bari:

Upon successful agreement on the roadmap, based on the objective and the digitalization need, we take around two to four weeks and our senior system architect to basically decide what are the component that we need to include into the cloud computing and what are the component that we can do on the edge computer to provide a robust [inaudible 00:16:25] and the secure system architecture.

Syed Bari:

As we previously agreed digitalization roadmap, we developed digital filtering in multiple phases. We provide the quick testing and the deployment. Using our digital twin technologies, companies can achieve 10% to 40% cost reduction and operation and maintenance expenses.

Syed Bari:

We have done a lot of demonstration and the use case. This is one of the demonstration that we did in Canada, in partnership with Telus, [AXN 00:17:01], and Ontario government for a remote operation use case. Here, we connected our BIoT gateway devices. So these are kind of our BIoT gateway devices, which has two data [inaudible 00:17:16] storage and [inaudible 00:17:18].

Syed Bari:

We connected this BIoT gateway device with on-site PLC using 5G technology. 5G provided the high speed internet and low latency. However, the BDATA provided a secure remote operation and monitoring using the digital twin platform.

Syed Bari:

BIoT SDK is very easy to deploy. It is deployed in the core of the device. To get the BIoT deploy on your Linux-based operating system or hardware, you can basically have image downloaded on your hardware and just deploy it. Run the BIoT image and it will basically get embedded onto the board. It will take some information and do the authentication on the network. That's how it will be connected with all the iOS of the devices and then stream the data through that.

Syed Bari:

We have [inaudible 00:18:26] of the 22 PLCs and one of the prerequisite is basically having a Linux [inaudible 00:18:35] and the PLCs of the devices that based on that we can provide our BIoT SDK deployed on those devices. If the companies are interested in having the use case deployment, we can provide pre-deployed BIoT as the [inaudible 00:18:57] on the devices and they can just connect to their network as the data is streaming.

Syed Bari:

As I mentioned previously, we provide the BIoT SDK licenses separately, which can be deployed on any device based on the Linux operating system for secure immutable and auditable data streaming. We provide customizable digital twin platform, which basically charged monthly based on the number of equipment connected to that. It's all depends on the number of API hit that you get on the devices and that's how it kind of [inaudible 00:19:37]

Syed Bari:

So just to recap, on our site, we offer three solution, which we sell separately or in a bundle. Our target market is IoT devices, hardware manufacturer, and the manufacturing causes and industries. In our technology, we basically help companies to achieve the digital transformation with a secure way, by having a blockchain deployed on their devices and the networks. That's basically stream all the data securely in the form of hashes.

Syed Bari:

That's pretty much I have for today's presentation. As most of the use case that we are doing are classified and this presentation is going to be on the public. So I would like to connect with you guys again, to have more use cases that we can share with you, that we are doing the deployment in oil and gas and other region. I'm open for the questions. If you guys have any questions so we can [inaudible 00:20:47] and answer those.

Stephen LaMarca:

All right, Syed. Thank you so much. My first question would be... I think I've got two for you. My first question is how easy would it be or more... Better yet, what would specifically go into, let's say you have a customer. It's a manufacturing facility and they've subscribed to the industry for [Dano 00:21:16]. They're already streaming data from their devices and the method in which that data is moving from device to monitor or server, what have you, is an empty air MQTT solution, how difficult and what goes into pivoting from MQTT to BIoT like yours?

Syed Bari:

Yeah, MQTT works on the same type of the devices. It works on the Linux system. From that point of view, we are similar and all we need to do, we deploy, we download the image on that device. We run the image. Once we run the image, we have to connect the IO points where the data is coming. For example, if it's a sensor or it's a PLC, we have to connect that to the BIoT and deploy that onto the BIoT network. It takes around one hour for the deployment. After that, we provide the APIs for the companies to consume in their existing solution. For example, if they have some existing solution where they already have the dashboard and everything is already running, they can just configure our API to receive the data and have the analytics ready for them.

Stephen LaMarca:

Okay.

Syed Bari:

So it works with the existing solution that companies might already have. Yeah.

Stephen LaMarca:

Awesome. My... Actually, before I get to that question. When the data is being streamed from the device to whoever wants to monitor it, in some cases like with MTConnect, you can actually go onto a VPN, or even in some cases, a website, depending on how many layers of security you have and just type in the port and URL... Well, actually, IP address, I believe, and port number to that device and from anywhere, you can see the data streaming from that machine. By actually looking at the data, if you know what you're looking for, you can see the exact parameters. You can read it, if you know what you're looking for and see how the device is doing. [crosstalk 00:23:51]

Syed Bari:

Yeah, so I think what I understood that you're saying that how it's flexible for people to remotely get the data, right? That's the question. So basically all the devices or all the servers, all the customers who want to listen to the data or want to get the data from our API, we provide them the API. That API basically enroll the portion of the server or they're basically getting the data into our blockchain network. So it's becomes a part of the blockchain network and can listen to data. It's being like through the distributed network. So once we provide the certificate through our API to deploy on your network, and that's how you can basically listen to the data. If you don't have our APIs that's mean, that you are not part of the blockchain network. That's mean, you will not be authenticated by the rest of the devices that we have deployed. That's mean, that you will not be able to see or... [crosstalk 00:24:56]

Stephen LaMarca:

Gotcha. So you can be part of the network, but unless you have the API, you don't have the cipher, if you would, to be able to read what the data transferring is.

Syed Bari:

That's right. So it's a network of the device. Just imagine the LAN network that you might have in your offices, where all the computers are connected through the LAN network. In the LAN network, you have to connect to the wires and then, all only those computers can talk to each other, right?

Syed Bari:

So the similar approach that we have instead of the wire, we have a chain, we call it a cryptographic chain. That cryptographic chain is basically connecting all the previously data issued to the future data that's being issued. So it's all connected to sharing the [STEM 00:25:46]. If you're getting to the part of the network, that's mean, you're going to endorse all the previously issued data as well. That's mean, the chain code that you are going to be, the part of it can recognize all the devices on the network. Once the consensus developed, consensus means that if you're writing new device, then the rest of the device on the network, 50 per one person of the device, they have to agree on the device coming in.

Stephen LaMarca:

Gotcha.

Syed Bari:

So this network basically allow the new device to come in once they have our API incorporated.

Stephen LaMarca:

So the consensus, which is the primary part of the concept of blockchain, am I right? The consensus part is that has the potential to... Since we're on the verge of, well, some would say we're on the verge of quantum computing technology, the consensus will aid in cyber and cyber physical security once quantum computing is more mainstream, if you would, am I right?

Syed Bari:

That's right. So blockchain will be further developed. So that's the new algorithm that's being developed every time and that's how they are [inaudible 00:27:02]. So they will be some content computing incorporated into the blockchain that will basically highly secure this at that particular future time. But at this time, the technology that we are using, it's an open source technology. It's being supported by a very large community. It's being scale-up very heavy level. Globally, we have already sell around like a hundred thousand licenses for the IoT devices. Adaption is very fast in the industry.

Stephen LaMarca:

All right. I don't see any questions coming in yet, but Kyle, did you have anything you'd like to add?

Kyle Saleeby:

Yeah. I really enjoyed your presentation. Thank you for walking through that information. I think you took some really difficult concepts and explained them very well for people that aren't as familiar with that technology. I was very impressed by that.

Kyle Saleeby:

I know cybersecurity is a huge interest right now in the manufacturing field. You see it all in their finance and national security, but bringing it to cybersecurity becomes very interesting. One point you made right at the end of your presentation particularly caught my eye, that a lot of the work that you do is classified or as secure work.

Kyle Saleeby:

So my question is, do you see this as a mechanism for other shops to enter into the secure research or the secure production field? Do you see yourself as a company that could be used for shops to leverage that and thereby gain more work or gain more jobs? What's kind of your future vision for that, with respect to this technology?

Syed Bari:

So the future of the technology is very bright, right? For example, right now we provide the device without the application app store. We will provide the app store as well. That's mean the companies can control or download their existing or the third party application to our app store and they can basically use it through our platform. That's mean, if somebody has a great machine learning application, which you might not have, and they want to use that particular application, they basically use our app stores and configure through that and use this technology.

Syed Bari:

There are some companies in Singapore that we are working with, they are interested in basically having a payment method through the [inaudible 00:29:25] gateway devices. That's mean, that these gateway devices will be used as an on-site cloud computing devices. That's mean, the payment will be coming based on the devices used deployed on-site facility. The payment method will be deployed through those app stores. Somebody who has the payment method, they can basically apply those payment method through the app stores and scale up that product or use case.

Kyle Saleeby:

So I guess on another point, you mentioned how they're keeping it via on-site or going over to a cloud computing center. How does the bandwidth and the data usage play into this? Is there a level of security for low data bandwidth? Is it all or nothing? How do people navigate that space to avoid paying tremendous amounts for the data, but also have a nice secure platform?

Syed Bari:

Yes. So we provide our licenses in the terms of the API hits or the devices that we have. The more they use it, they need to pay more. The less they use, they need to pay less. Our API cost is like 0.0, zero triple zero $5. So it's very, very low as compared to the VPN technology. We even provide a highly secure technology. Our pricing is very, very compatible with the VPN technology.

Kyle Saleeby:

Gotcha.

Syed Bari:

The core part is basically data security and the cyber security. Most of the solution that you might encounter in the market, they provide you the authentication security. That's mean, this device is authenticated, but they don't really provide you the immutability part. The 5G required the immutable depart so that you can have the remote operation use case. That's mean, one of the use cases that we are working with a very large oil and gas company in Middle East, where they have thousand kilometer pipeline. In that thousand kilometer pipeline, they have 50 pumping stations. So those 50 pumping station, they want them to have a global control. That's mean, if one pumping station is up, then they can up the other pumping station too. That's the local automation require secure immutable data streaming where you can basically trust the data as well as to trust the remote control that implemented on those devices.

Kyle Saleeby:

Yeah, I think this is a fantastic platform and of course, fantastic work. There's such a bright future and I mean, countless opportunities that you could apply this to.

Syed Bari:

Sure. Thank you very much.

Author
Syed Bari
Founder
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