In recent decades, modern societies are experiencing an increasing adoption of interconnected smart devices. This revolution involves not only canonical devices such as smartphones and tablets, but also simple objects like light bulbs. Named the Internet of Things (IoT), this ever-growing scenario offers enormous opportunities in many areas of modern society, especially if joined by other emerging technologies such as, for example, the blockchain. Indeed, the latter allows users to certify transactions publicly, without relying on central authorities or intermediaries. This work aims to exploit the scenario above by proposing a novel blockchain-based distributed paradigm to secure localization services, here named the Internet of Entities (IoE). It represents a mechanism for the reliable localization of people and things, and it exploits the increasing number of existing wireless devices and blockchain-based distributed ledger technologies. Moreover, unlike most of the canonical localization approaches, it is strongly oriented towards the protection of the users' privacy. Finally, its implementation requires minimal efforts since it employs the existing infrastructures and devices, thus giving life to a new and wide data environment, exploitable in many domains, such as e-health, smart cities, and smart mobility.
Keywords: Internet of Entities; Internet of Things; blockchain; distributed ledger; localization; mobile network.