Coinbase, the cryptocurrency exchange, has snagged a patent that looks to bring a measure of security to payments done over bitcoin.
As reported by several media outlets, including ones focused on cryptocurrencies such as CoinDesk, Coinbase’s efforts were published in a filing earlier this week. The overarching theme of the patent is one where a payment portal would foster bitcoin payments done directly, as CoinDesk notes, from digital wallets.
In a bit of technical detail, as outlined by the patent, there is a “key ceremony” that in turn sets up key sharing and the creation of a master key that, after public use, is deleted.
In setting out concerns and proposed solutions, Coinbase said in its patent filing that “it may be a security concern for users that the private keys of their bitcoin addresses may be stolen from their wallets,” and stated that “existing systems do not provide a solution for maintaining security over private keys while still allowing the users to check out on a merchant page and make payments using their wallets.”
The patent describes the existence of an API key, which, as the report notes, would allow for different portal versions to be created.
One feature of the system and the process is “freeze logic,” which stops transactions in the event that the system is, upon the decision of an administrator, suspended. In language that described how “freeze logic” would work, Coinbase said in the filing that “at any point in time after the master key is loaded, the system can be frozen. The system can be unfrozen after it has been frozen using keys from the key ceremony. The checkout process can be carried out when the system is frozen and when the system is unfrozen. The payment process can only be carried out when the system is unfrozen.”