Types Of Blockchain:  Permissionless vs Permissioned

Today, blockchain is being used widely more than cryptocurrency applications, with many groups seeking to use blockchain for other types of peer-to-peer value transfers, like decentralized file storage, Supply Chain Management and even social media.

Deciding whether people need permission to validate or not on your blockchain network is just the first big architectural decision in deploying distributed ledger technologies.

The key difference between permissioned and permissionless blockchains lies in the nodes that participate in the blockchain network.

Blockchain types

Permissionless Blockchain

All types of blockchains fall under two major categories permissionless, permissioned, or both.  Permissionless blockchains allow any user to join the blockchain network (that is, to become “nodes” of the network) and do not restrict the rights of the nodes on the blockchain network.

Pros of Permissionless blockchain

  • Open to all users to join the network
  • Bring trust to all users
  • Offers high security

Cons of Permissionless blockchain

  • Slow transaction speed
  • Low energy efficient
  • Harder to scale


  • Digital identity
  • Voting system
  • Fundraising

Permissioned Blockchain

Conversely, permissioned blockchains restrict access to the user to certain nodes and may also restrict the rights of those nodes on that network.  The identities of the users of a permissioned blockchain are known to the other users of that permissioned blockchain.

Pros of Permissioned Blockchain

  • Extremely fast output
  • Scalable network
  • High energy efficiency

Cons of Permissioned blockchain

  • Not truly decentralized
  • Less transparency
  • Partially immutable


  • Banking and payment
  • Supply Chain Management
  • Food Tracking

To summarize, permissionless blockchains are fully decentralized and open to all, while permissioned models are more centralized and more restrictive. It could be said that yes, permissionless and permissioned blockchains can coexist. It’s just that they have different purposes. 

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