This section provides a brief note on the e-Government systems and the block chain technology.
a. E-Government Systems
E-Government refers to the provision of Government services and information online through any digital means or the internet (M. Alsheri and S. Drew 2010). E-Government delivers government services and information to the government agencies, business and citizens. There are three eminent classifications of the services provided by e-Government. They are; government to business (G2B) service, government to citizen service (G2C) and government to government service (G2G). The government-to-government service provides interaction online between organizations, authorities and departments of the government to exchange information between them with the utilization of the internet. Government to business (G2B) and government to citizens (G2C) services allow businesses and citizens to have government interactions for getting online services like, e-procurement application, online voting, licenses and passport, renewal/ extending of visa, filling of income tax, property tax etc. Only authorized users could access the confidential information of individuals, which is confirmed by each department in the e-government building of a reliable system that is relied by the users, is an essential factor to be considered during the implementation of e-government. In an e-government system, assurance of privacy and security acts as a critical factor to increase the reliability between various departments of the government. This in turn helps in getting privileged access to confidential information and gain integrity. Phishing, DDoS, malware, probes etc. are some cyber attacks, which are faced by the e-government systems. It is because of these cyber attacks, there are possibilities for supremacy contests, cyber terrorism, extortion, political differences etc., which happens between various nations or occurs within one nation. The privacy and security of e-government systems are offered utilizing anti-virus mechanisms, Public Key Infrastructure (PKI), Intrusion Detection Systems (IDS) and firewalls. e-ID system is utilized to deal with the security issues of e-government systems such as for integrity, confidentiality, authentication and for identification of information of the users.
b. Block chain technology
Block chain technology refers to a structure, which encapsulates many records of transactions called the public block, which is stored in various databases that are connected across a network with peer-to-peer nodes. This structure is otherwise called a digital ledger (simple learn 2021). A block chain functions in the form of immutable ledger that enables transactions to happen in a decentralized form. The block chain based endeavors are rising at present that has internet of things (IoT), reputation systems, financial services etc. But it has some security and scalability issues, which has to be resolved (Zheng et.al 2017). Some of the block chain benefits comprise of openness, tamper-proof construction, transparency of information, decentralization and distributed ledger. Depending upon their application, the block chains are classified as 3.0, 2.0 and 1.0. Block chain technology is also endeavored in copyright protection, smart energy, market analysis, supply chain management, government functions and healthcare (Xu et.al 2019). The following figure indicates a typical block chain architecture that comprise of a series of blocks of data.
Block chain architecture
The block chain architecture comprise of a series of block sequence that encapsulates a total list of transactions; Example; a public ledger. In the block chain architecture, the large block is the block header, which has six other blocks such as parent block hash, nonce, n Bits, time stamp, merkle tree root hash and block version. Within the block header, only one block would be a parent block. In the block chain architecture, the initial block is known as the genesis block, which lacks any parent block. The block chain architecture comprise of blocks and digital signature. A block comprise of a block body and block header as represented in the below figure.
The block header comprise of block version that represents the rules of block validation that is to be followed. In a block, the entire transactions’ hash value is represented in the Merkle tree root hash. The present universal time in seconds is represented in the time stamp. A valid block’s hash value is indicated as the target threshold in the n-bits. Nonce indicates a 4 byte field that initiates from zero and rises for each calculation of hash. The parent block indicates the 256 bit hash value, which represents the block of the previous section. Transactions and transaction counter are encapsulated within the block body. An asymmetric cryptographic technique is utilized by the block chain for validating transactions’ authentication. Digital signature is contemplated on the above technique. Pair of public and private keys is owned by every user. The transactions are signed by the confidential private key. Thus, verification and signing phases are included in the digital signature. In a block chain technology, the striking features are decentralization, persistency, anonymity and auditability.