The Bank of China (BoC), one of the four largest state-owned commercial banks in the country, has filed a patent for a solution to scale blockchain systems via data compression.
According to a document released by China’s State Intellectual Property Office (SIPO) on February 23, Bank of China’s patent application was invented by Zhao Shuxiang and first submitted on September 28, 2017.
The patent filing contains a method for compressing blockchain data that seeks to solve the problem of storage space in new blocks without compromising on traceability and immutability. Instead of letting a block store the transactions from a previous one, with a specific system that compress the data, the new block could be used in order to pack transactions from multiple blocks. This is what the patent calls a “data block.”
For example, as the patent application describes, when the system receives a request to compress transactions from block 1 to 1,000, it causes a new data block to be formed and temporarily hosted on a different storage system. The system will then run the packed data through a hash function with a hash value. After that, the compression system will attach labels in order to identify blocks on the blockchain.
The BoC claims that this method will solve the scalability issue that plagues current blockchain technology as large amounts of transactions mount in the system, without compromising blockchain’s vary nature of traceability and non-repudiation.
The blockchain patent comes as part of a wider effort by the Bank of China in advancing its businesses through using blockchain technology. Last year, the BoC partnered with China’s internet giant Tencent to establish a FinTech lab with a focus on blockchain technology.
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