What Is Proof-of-Authority (PoA)?
Proof-of-Authority (PoA) is a consensus algorithm used in blockchain networks to validate transactions and create new blocks. It is an alternative to the more commonly known Proof of Work (PoW) consensus mechanism, which requires miners to solve complex mathematical puzzles in order to add new blocks onto the chain. PoA works differently by relying on preselected validators or “authorities” who are responsible for verifying transactions and creating new blocks. These authorities must be trusted members of the network, such as government officials or corporate executives, who have been approved by all participants in the network. This ensures that only legitimate transactions can be added onto the chain while also providing faster transaction speeds than traditional PoW algorithms due to its reduced computational requirements.
In addition, PoA offers improved security compared with other consensus mechanisms since it relies on a limited number of trusted nodes instead of anonymous miners competing against each other for rewards. This makes it much harder for malicious actors to gain control over the network since they would need access to multiple authority accounts at once in order to successfully attack it. As such, many enterprise applications are now turning towards this type of consensus algorithm as a way of ensuring secure and reliable operations within their distributed systems without sacrificing speed or scalability.