Kansas Patent of the Month – May 2023

SpiderOak Inc, a leading provider of secure collaboration tools, has recently been granted a patent for a blockchain-based solution to grant access permissions to users. 

A growing problem in today’s computer environment stems from our reliance on a centralized infrastructure. These infrastructures are managed internally. This leaves organizations open to internal threats. In standard Microsoft SharePoint Admin Role documentation, SharePoint admins may not have automatic access to all sites and each user’s OneDrive, but they can grant themselves access to any of these at any time. SpiderOak’s solution improves on this design, offering a more secure file system reliant on access granting limited to authorized users.

The method involves creating a blockchain containing a user’s cryptographic ID and the authority associated with that ID. This authority defines at least one operation that the user can perform on the blockchain. The blockchain is not encrypted, and a requesting device can access it by sending a request containing a cryptographic user ID. The method then determines whether the user has the authority to access the blockchain and generates a second token granting access to the blockchain to the user upon determining that the user has the authority to access the blockchain.

This method ensures that only authorized users have access to the blockchain, enhancing data security. Moreover, the patent also includes a method to separate a recovery key into multiple parts and encrypt these parts before distributing them among several devices. This added layer of security ensures that unauthorized access to the blockchain is nearly impossible.

The patent also covers storing cryptographic keys and ensuring that only authorized devices have access to them. This method, combined with the other methods covered in the patent, ensures that data security is never compromised.

The use of blockchain technology in secure collaborations is still in its nascent stages. SpiderOak is pushing the envelope and building leading-edge technology in order to protect the world’s most valuable data. The company built the first zero-trust, no-knowledge security tools in 2006 and have continued this process of innovation ever since, protecting a range of civil, military, and commercial space operations.

Are you developing new technology for an existing application? Did you know your development work could be eligible for the R&D Tax Credit and you can receive up to 14% back on your expenses? Even if your development isn’t successful your work may still qualify for R&D credits (i.e. you don’t need to have a patent to qualify). To find out more, please contact a Swanson Reed R&D Specialist today or check out our free online eligibility test.

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