Are there any special blockchain languages

Legal framework of the blockchain

In the area of ​​data protection law, the problems between blockchain technology and the German or European legal system have so far come to the fore most clearly. Characteristic properties of the blockchain, such as the decentralized administration, the pseudonymity of the users and the immutability of the data, raise many questions in connection with the essential basic principles of German and European data protection law.

First of all, one could assume that data protection law is not applicable to blockchains due to the lack of personal data. Ultimately, individual information about personal or factual circumstances of a specific or identifiable natural person would have to be processed, which is doubtful, since in the so far best-known Bitcoin blockchain, users only appear on the network via a public key, i.e. with a pseudonym. Real names or other personal data are not disclosed.

Nevertheless, in many application scenarios it must be assumed that the users in the blockchain can be determined. Some studies have already confirmed the possibility of re-identifying Bitcoin blockchain users using certain heuristics. This is often achieved through information from third-party institutions connected to the blockchain - such as trading platforms - on which the delivery address or the bank details of a user are stored.

Furthermore, it must be clarified who is actually the addressee of the data protection obligations in the blockchain and thus the so-called "responsible body". According to the Federal Data Protection Act, the responsible body is any person or body that collects, processes, or uses personal data for themselves or has this done by others on behalf of them. A similar definition can be found in the EU General Data Protection Regulation applicable from May 2018.

Since the decentralized system of the blockchain is characterized by the fact that not one person or body alone decides on the processing of the data, but rather every participant is equally involved in all transactions taking place in the system, every participant would also have to be considered a responsible body in terms of data protection law. However, not every participant alone has an influence on the entire blockchain. Against this background, the question arises whether a new model of data protection responsibility may have to be created for the blockchain.

One of the biggest data protection challenges of the blockchain is that its immutability and the enforcement of data protection rights seem to be diametrically opposed. Since the blockchain can in fact no longer be changed (possibly after a transition phase), the implementation of the right to delete data, the right to rectification and the right to be forgotten is difficult. At least in the case of a public blockchain, implementation in compliance with data protection regulations might even be partially impossible, provided that personal data of European participants is processed and one comes to the conclusion that this is personal data in the specific case. A different assessment can possibly be reached in the case of a private or “permissioned” blockchain in which a certain operator provides the infrastructure and is responsible for the organization. Strictly speaking, these models lack the decentralization typical of the blockchain. In some areas of application, however, this is currently the only solution in which legal hurdles can be circumvented through an individual contract design.