Network tech giant Cisco has won a patent detailing how it could leverage blockchain to secure the data in 5G telecommunication networks.

The San Jose, Calif.-based company submitted a patent application in June 2018 for a blockchain platform that can be natively integrated in wireless networks, according to a Nov. 26 filing from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). 

The blockchain platform aims to manage data sessions between an equipment user, such as a phone or laptop, and a virtual network. In other words, the new technology can manage part of the data exchanges between a network and a connected device via the blockchain interface. 

The company describes how a blockchain platform can be used to support network slices, referring to an architecture that allows multiple independent virtualized networks to run in the same physical infrastructure more efficiently. 

“This service-oriented architecture supports network slices, which employ an isolated set of programmable resources that can implement individual network functions and/or application services through software programs within a respective network slice, without interfering with other functions and services on coexisting network slices,” the filing said. 

Cisco is among a long list of information technology companies that are exploring the integration of blockchain technologies and Internet of Things (IoT). Companies, such as Bosch, BNY Mellon, Chronicled and Filament, have used Hyperledger, ethereum and Quorum to create or upgrade their products and services. 

In September, Cisco partnered with artificial intelligence services provider SingularityNet to decentralize AI systems by preventing one single source from concentrating computers’ capacity to learn through blockchain technologies. The company has also been trying to develop another blockchain technology that would create a more secure environment for group chats in a network, according to a filing dated in March 2018.

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