The recent patent filings by Barclays Bank, the second-largest bank in the UK suggests that it may be considering using blockchain technology to streamline its fund transfer procedure and Know-Your-Consumer (KYC) process. The US Patent and Trademark Office recently published two applications by the bank which emphasises on the account security.
One of the patent application focuses on a blockchain-platform that could promote cryptocurrency transfer, while the other patent emphasises streamlining KYC-procedure by storing identifying information on a private blockchain.
One document explains: "The use of a blockchain provides at least several benefits. These include its public nature, allowing any other party or entity from viewing the data and cryptographic verification of the data enabled by the digital signatures, hashing and layered nature of the blockchain. The transaction is a complete and verified unit of data in a form that may be added to the blockchain ... Further or duplicate checks and work may be avoided, which can improve the efficiency of computer networks."
Barclays' patent claim aims at providing a "more reliable form of verification without substantially increasing technical overheads and improves the operation of computing environments and telecommunications networks."
Moreover, the company has also proposed a 'Super' user authority, which will allow the user to transfer old information to present blocks, thus, theoretically tackling the issue of blockchain size and storage problems. The second patent suggests developing a blockchain platform for transferring "digital currency from a payer to a recipient."
While the patent applications filed by any individual or company doesn't guarantee the use of the particular technology in the system, the recent application does indicate the bank's interest and research in the blockchain technology.