The blockchain technologies research and development firm, Nchain, has acquired three new patents that have been issued by the European Patent Office. The company’s latest intellectual property invented by Nchain’s chief scientist, Dr. Craig Wright, cover “digital rights management using blockchain.”
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Nchain Acquires Three New Blockchain Patents
Nchain says that the Bitcoin Cash (BCH) network has the ability to disintermediate the current intermediaries within our financial transactions. Digital rights management allows creators of digital content the ability to ensure that they are paid for their work. Nchain asserts that the three new patents issued by the European Patent Office will help bolster digital rights management. Furthermore, the patents follow two other EPO grants acquired by Nchain on April 11 and June 20 – which apply to BCH deterministic key generation, and a blockchain registry and automated management method.
“These third, fourth and fifth patent grants by the European Patent Office marks demonstrate the value in Nchain’s program for blockchain innovation,” explains the Nchain Group CEO Jimmy Nguyen.
We will continue working to make blockchain technology more usable, for more advanced functions, by major enterprises around the world.
Digital Rights Management Using Blockchain
The three patents acquired by Nchain and invented by Dr. Craig Wright include:
- EP3295349 “A method and system for verifying the integrity of a digital asset using a distributed hash table and a peer-to-peer distributed ledger”. This invention uses a standard Bitcoin Cash transaction that includes additional metadata to reference an entry within an external Distributed Hash Table (DHT) where signatures of the digital asset, plus the signatures on the DHT and the signature on the blockchain transaction itself, must align to demonstrate the integrity of the asset.
- EP3295362 “A method and system for verifying ownership of a digital asset using a distributed hash table and a peer-to-peer distributed ledger”. This invention builds on the technique in the first invention above (EP3295349) to add another set of cryptographic operations that allows the current owner of the digital asset to be validated.
- EP3295350 “A method and system for verifying ownership of a digital asset using a distributed hash table and a peer-to-peer distributed ledger”. This invention is a logical extension of the technique defined in the second invention above (EP3295362); it allows the computer software to check the rights of the user to execute such software prior to launching that software.
Calvin Ayre: Protecting the Technology They Invent to Release Open Source
Of course, not everyone is thrilled about the use of patents within the cryptocurrency ecosystem – which is traditionally dominated by open source projects. Some people within the BCH community detest the fact that Nchain has been acquiring state-enforced intellectual property rights. However, the owner of the blockchain and mining firm Coingeek, Calvin Ayre, believes it is necessary for companies like Nchain to acquire these patents because otherwise bigger companies like Bank of America, Visa, and others will grab them first. Many large financial incumbents have been patent grabbing blockchain concepts, with firms like American Express and Mastercard acquiring IP just recently.
When Mastercard acquired a patent that facilitates anonymous cryptocurrency transactions Coingeek’s Calvin Ayre stated:
This is precisely why Nchain has to go the patent route…to protect technology they invent to release open source.
What do you think about Nchain acquiring three new blockchain patents from the European Patent Office? Do you agree with Calvin Ayre that if Nchain doesn’t grab these patents, a much larger financial incumbent will? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comment section below.
Images via Shutterstock, Twitter, and Nchain Group.
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