JPMorgan, Barclays Seek Blockchain-Related Patents, USPTO Files Show

Barclays and JPMorgan seek patents for their blockchain-related inventions, according to the applications published by the USPTO.

The US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) published on Thursday three pending patent applications that were filed by two giant banking groups – JPMorgan Chase and Barclays. New York-based JPMorgan wants to patent a system that leverages blockchain for the management of virtual receipts backed by assets or bonds. Barclays has two applications, which apply the distributed ledger technology for secure digital data operations and data validation and storage.


The UK-based banking group filed a patent application for the following blockchain-related systems: “Secure Digital Data Operations” and “Data Validation and Storage.” Both inventions refer to systems and methods for storing and managing data that describes a person or company. In addition, the first invention also presents a system and apparatus for a digital currency system.

The description section stresses that it is essential for separate parties to receive and securely store relevant data about each other, especially when they use computer networks based on the Internet. In this case, the security of communication depends on the trustworthiness of the involved entities, which has to rely on verification processes. The technology that underpins Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies would work well to ensure the required security level, the documents note.

Besides the storage of information, the “Secure Digital Data Operations” proposes a system for peer-to-peer transfer of digital currencies based on the validation of data that describes either one or both entities. 

The patent applications were initially filed on January 8, 2018.


JPMorgan’s patent application is titled “systems and methods for management of asset or obligation-backed virtual receipts on a distributed system.” The application was filed on January 12, 2018. The invention proposes to leverage blockchain technology for the management of virtual receipts, which can take the form of tokens. According to the description:

“Virtual Depositary Receipts, or "Virtual Receipts," are asset or obligation-backed electronic tokens that may provide investors, brokers, custodians, and clearing firms with a means to link an underlying asset or obligation with its digital representation on a distributed system for the purposes of ownership tracking and transfer; transaction clearing and settlement; asset origination, distribution and securitization; and other such marketplace processes that may be facilitated on a distributed system.”

Last month, the USPTO published a JPMorgan blockchain-related patent application for “systems and methods for privacy in distributed ledger transactions.”