Bank of America Wins Crypto Storage Patent

Nikhilesh De
Nov 14, 2018 at 05:00 UTC
Updated Nov 14, 2018 at 12:13 UTC

A patent awarded to the Bank of America outlines how enterprise-level institutions may be able to store cryptocurrencies owned by their customers.

The filing, awarded by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Tuesday, contends that large companies – specifically enterprise-level institutions – may want to store cryptocurrencies for customers should they see wider adoption.

There is an increasing number of enterprises which may transact with cryptocurrencies or offer services related to them, including crypto exchanges and custodians, according to the patent – and some of these businesses may be required to convert a deposit of some currency into a cryptocurrency to then hold.

In order to securely hold these funds, a business may therefore wish to use a single enterprise-level account capable of storing cryptocurrencies.

The document suggests that a customer account may be credited with an equivalent value to their cryptocurrency deposits, though the funds themselves would be stored in an aggregated enterprise account.

As the patent explains:

“Enterprises may handle a large number of financial transactions on a daily basis. As technology advances, financial transactions involving cryptocurrency have become more common. For some enterprises, it may be desirable to aggregate cryptocurrency deposited by customers in an enterprise account.”

To that end, the bank’s system includes a processor and memory to store a private key associated with some cryptocurrency holdings. The patent goes on to describe how this system would be able to both store the holdings, as well as facilitate transactions when authorized.

This sort of system brings a number of benefits in terms of using less bandwidth and memory, as well as requiring fewer computational and power resources, according to the document.

To allow customers to conduct transactions with their funds, the system would grant the customer access to their specific account. They would then be able to execute a transaction with their cryptocurrency directly through the account.

The patent award is the latest to emerge for Bank of America in recent days. In a patent award issued late last month, Bank of America hinted at a means for storing cryptographic keys – including those tied to crypto assets – on a hardware device.

BoA image via Shutterstock