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The patent filing explains an automatic email system that can send Bitcoins from the sender to the receiver’s wallet linked to their email addresses.
Brian Armstrong, CEO of cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase, has recently secured a patent for sending Bitcoins via email. Initially filed in March 2015, the patent was finally rewarded this week on Tuesday, December 17.
Basically, the patent describes a method for cryptocurrency payments by linking the email addresses to their corresponding wallet addresses. Once the sender makes a request to send crypto payments to an email address, the system automatically sends the desired amount.
Note that this system only works provided the sender has the required balance in their wallet. Once the receiver confirms the payment, the system takes only 48 hours for clearance and settlement. Moreover, a secure wallet stores the cryptocurrencies which aren’t in use. Only the email address linked to the wallet can access it.
Currently, the patent talks about system functionality only for Bitcoin. However, using other public cryptocurrencies for a similar transfer process shouldn’t create many problems. Furthermore, there is no such restriction for the email provider. The email system is likely to have a facility to make in-app Bitcoin trades using fiat currencies linked to the bank account.
Addressing the Security Features
The patent also highlights some of the security features for the new email system. The patent notes that when the sender of Bitcoin clicks the “Finish” button during the checkout, the system creates a wallet-like vault. As a security measure, this system limits the transfer of Bitcoin.
Furthermore, to make the Bitcoin payments more secure, the filing notes that the transaction parties will get two notifications each on linked email addresses and the phone numbers associated with the wallet.
Also, the private keys for the Bitcoin addresses will be split and distributed in order to keep the transactions secure. This will also prevent any sort of exposure to the private keys during the checkout process. The patent states that “User can opt to have private keys stored in locations that are under their control”.
The good thing is that users don’t pay mining fees. However, the system will charge transaction fees for transfer to external wallets. The filing also notes that the system administrator can suspend suspicious accounts using an automated process.
It’s also worth mentioning that Coinbase has also managed to secure two other patents. Their aim is to strengthen security aspects. The patents are related to fraud prevention and risk management which is extremely important when it comes to digital assets.