A new patent application from Mastercard suggests that the global credit card issuer is exploring ways to build refund services for cryptocurrency users.
The application, titled "Information Transaction Infrastructure", was published by the the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) on August 3, having been submitted in late January. Vladimir Goloshchuk, who according to LinkedIn previously worked as a senior analyst at Mastercard, is listed as the sole inventor.
The application details an infrastructure through which users could verify their identities, which would then be linked to cryptocurrency addresses they elect to disclose.
The text of the application points to this being most relevant for situations in which users are submitting payments to merchants from accounts on exchanges, or other services, in which their funds may be held alongside those belonging to others.
In the event that a merchant has to send the money back for a refund, they would send it back to an address linked to that user's account – a situation in which the exchange or custody holder might then need to know where those funds are being sourced from and why.
To counter this, Mastercard proposes a way for users, through a shared service, to have two kinds of wallets.
"The basic principle of the arrangement ... is that a user of the shared wallet service has two types of wallet. Firstly, they have a 'public' wallet for on-the-chain publicly visible and verified transactions. The user will make and receive cryptocurrency payments external to the shared wallet service using a public wallet," the application explains, adding:
Disclosure: Mastercard is an investor in Digital Currency Group, CoinDesk's parent company.
Mastercard image via Photo_for_You/Shutterstock.com
The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups. As part of their compensation, certain CoinDesk employees, including editorial employees, may receive exposure to DCG equity in the form of stock appreciation rights, which vest over a multi-year period. CoinDesk journalists are not allowed to purchase stock outright in DCG.
Learn more about Consensus 2023, CoinDesk’s longest-running and most influential event that brings together all sides of crypto, blockchain and Web3. Head to consensus.coindesk.com to register and buy your pass now.