Bank of America Files for Blockchain ATMs Patent

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A recently revealed patent application indicates that Bank of America may be eyeing blockchain-powered shared networks of ATMs.

Released by the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) on Tuesday, the filing outlines a system through which cash-handling devices can leverage the blockchain tech to “accelerate transaction speed and/or facilitate other types of transactions in addition to ATM transactions like cash withdrawals and deposits, such as gift registry transactions.”

Per the document, blockchain could also help in handling “a relatively larger amount of transaction volume while reducing its physical cash transportation needs.”

Bank of America noted in the filing that majority of the ATMs today are dedicated to their respective banks and the institutions’ operating systems, but support for multi-purpose, “multi-tenant” features is necessary to provide different micro-services related to marketing and brand opportunities.

The bank aims to implement “ATM as a Service” to allow clients without a relationship with any participating financial institution to send funds across a similar ATM network as well as access point-to-point video communication via the ATM.

According to the patent, that would be possible through the implementation of an “open and robust” data transport layer with security and encryption.

“The data transport supporting ATM management, signaling, and non-financial institution and financial institution transactions may be strictly communicated to a cloud platform… and subsequent hosting of web and application services may allow secure and scalable operations,” it continues.

Media outlet iPR Daily reported that as of August, Bank of America has filed over 50 patents related to the blockchain. In November, the bank has obtained a cryptocurrency storage patent.