Visa Files Patent

Visa International (a multinational corporation providing an operating structure to support consumer payment services across the globe) has filed a Patent Application for a cryptocurrency system with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). The system is meant to replace physical currency. It efficiently utilizes both commercial and central banks and further leverages a private blockchain to enhance the current payment ecosystem.

The USPTO has quite recently published the patent application entitled “Digital Fiat Currency” on its official website. The patent application was filed by Visa International Service Association last year on 8th November.

The Patent Filing is corresponding to a fiat-linked cryptocurrency system that uses a private permissioned distributed ledger platform. The filing has described a central computer and its responsibilities, along with the critical roles of the system, namely, central entities, validating entries, and redeeming entries. The documents submitted with the patent application have explained these critical roles as:

  • A central entity may refer to a bank, which is responsible for regulating a monetary supply.
  • Validating entities refer to the blockchain nodes, which may be peers like banks.
  • Redeeming entities like an ATM or a bank branch location, which may accept the physical currency for the exchange of digital fiat currency.

The central entity computer is responsible for generating the digital currency, which is, in turn, recorded on a blockchain. Additionally, it may also determine whether a specific digital currency unit should be added to the blockchain or removed from it.

The patent filing has further specified that the payment ecosystem is capable of becoming 100% digital, and cash may be effectively removed from the global markets in a frictionless manner to enhance the entire payment ecosystem. It has also mentioned that the users may have a digital currency with the same denomination as the local physical currency.

According to the patent filing, once the digital fiat currency is issued, a bank or user may transfer the digital currency from one wallet to another or store the same on a smart card and transfer the smart card to some other entity.

In a recent statement delivered, a Visa spokesperson stated that the corporation seeks patents for hundreds of new ideas and innovations every year. He further added that not all patents result in the creation of new products and features; however, Visa respects the utmost importance of Intellectual Property (IP) and works actively at all times to safeguard its innovations, ecosystem, and brand.

Many other well-known companies and organizations have also tried to patent several cryptocurrency systems. For instance, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) has recently granted an international patent for a Cryptocurrency Mining System (that uses body activity data) to Microsoft.