Nasdaq has won a patent that will use the blockchain to secure and disseminate time sensitive information to the parties involved. Public documents published on October 23, 2018, shows that the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO) has approved Nasdaq’s application to patent a system for securing and sharing time sensitive information through the blockchain. The American stock exchange, which is the second largest stock market in the world by market cap for the patent in Jan. 2017.
The patent reads:
“A number of electronic platforms (referred to as “wire services,” “newswire services,” “news release distribution services,” “online news distribution services,” and the like) exist that allow for the dissemination of news information (and other types of information) to appropriate recipients in a timely manner. Many such platforms provide a web-based interface that allows a customer to upload, for example, a report from the FDA regarding a new drug, or an earnings report for a company. This information may be received and then processed by the platform, stored into a database, and then released to recipients at a designated time (e.g., via email or published to a website or other data “feed”).”
According to the patent, existing news wire services can distribute information to the appropriate recipients within a set time, but these platforms often “lead to audit trail gaps (or no audit trail at all).” It also reveals the complexity in wire services often leads to error, necessitating “new and improved techniques” for disseminating time sensitive information.
Nasdaq’s solution involves a blockchain platform that leverages smart contracts which incorporates encryption and other workflow features into the wire service, making it more difficult to be tampered with over time.
It goes further to state that the “computer system and blockchain are programmed to allow dissemination of the information directly to selected parties at a set scheduled time by using programs or scripts.” These programs, also known as smart contracts would have been added to the blockchain.
Users who wish to access the sensitive information stored on the blockchain might require the use of a multi-signature that’s included in the smart contracts that “make up a given blockchain transaction,” the patent reads.
“The intended recipients of the information may then directly interface with the blockchain at the scheduled time (e.g., that is controlled by the embedded script that is part of a transaction) to access information that has been securely stored thereon.”