New IBM Patent Will Allow for Greater Replay Attack Security on Permissioned Blockchains


IBM is known for their major strides in the tech industry and have been particularly focused on developments in blockchain technology as well. In a publication from the US Patent and Trademark Office on March 12th, a patent filed in 2016 for a way to improve security amongst permissioned blockchain networks.

The patent is called “Resisting replay attacks efficiently in a permissioned and privacy-preserving blockchain network.” Within the request, IBM discusses security techniques that would help with a blockchain’s defense against attacks, but without compromising the privacy and permissions of users.

A replay attack involves a valid data transmission, but it is repeated or delayed for the purpose of fraud or malicious intent. IBM included some background on replay attacks for the patent, saying that the replay makes blockchain validators include the transaction over and over. However, these blocks on the ledger repost without the creator of the transaction’s permission.

To resist this type of transaction, IBM has created a method of communication between the computer systems on a network, which secures the validation of transactions. In the patent, IBM states that this communication would create a security value that can only be applied one time, which then creates a message to ensure that the transaction is limited to one occurrence. The message includes a signed security certificate and includes the security value of the transaction.

There is plenty of variations of this type of invention, showing how validator permissions need to be secured for networked systems. IBM has been pursuing many types of patents that deal with the blockchain, according to a recent data survey. Comparatively, IBM is nearly at the same numbers for patents filed around the world as Alibaba in China.

Last week, IBM revealed two more blockchain applications – one involving network security and one involving blockchain for database management systems.

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