Mastercard seeks patent for using blockchain to safeguard identity data

Mastercard is planning to use blockchain technology to improve identity management and combat identity fraud. In the patent filing submitted by the ‘payments giant’ describes a system which would be used to receive and store identity data using a semi-private or private blockchain.

Originally submitted in September 2017, the filing suggests that the blockchain technology could help them block the use of fake identity data.

Mastercard notes:

“The use of a blockchain for the storage of identity and credential data may provide for an immutable storage of such data that can provide an accurate verification thereof and also prevent the fabrication of such data.”

A ‘data file’ would be generated for each entity, which would be associated with a public key and a ‘geographic jurisdiction’. While these entities would be ‘subordinate’, another ‘superior’ entity would impose a digital signature on their data files. An ‘identity value’ would be generated for each entity by a ‘hashing module of the processing server’, which would create a block with a timestamp. This would, in turn, create a record of the most recent block added to the blockchain.

This system would protect identity information as only the Mastercard-approved nodes make changes in the information.

The company writes:

“In such instances, it may be difficult for an entity to disprove a false identity, leading to an interaction with an inauthentic individual or entity. Thus, there is a need for a technical solution to provide for the immutable storage of identity and credential data that may prevent fabrication and inaccuracies.”

Last year, Mastercard submitted several patent application in order to adopt the technology. It planned to make use of a system that could facilitate refund services for cryptocurrency users and also make payments easier by using blockchain to process payments.

Additionally, on Thursday, Mastercard announced that it was hiring 175 new technology developers for development with regard to the blockchain.

John Robinsen said:

“It seems that the blockchain tech is continuing to grow in many different fields. These are exciting times that we are living in. This is a great step towards preventing identity fraud and malpractices.”

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