Western Union Filed Patent Application That Utilizes Crypto
Western Union, global money transfer service, has submitted a patent for a new payment system backed by cryptocurrency. It indicates the acceptance of cryptocurrency and blockchain by global payment providers for liquidity, security and faster transfers.
The patent was originally filed in December of 2016. Western Union’s step of filing with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office brings out a new method for increasing the security of electronic payments.
The patent introduces a biometric verification system in order to ensure that all the transactions are authorized by the senders. Such category of verification process requires voice sample, fingerprint or retina scan.
The system will operate as a general-purpose tool and will accommodate many types of electronic networks like cryptocurrencies. The document specifically notes that “in certain embodiments” the “electronic transfer network may be a cryptocurrency network like Litecoin, Bitcoin or any other coin.
“Thus, in various embodiments, electronic transfer network may be configured to support and perform transfers of various currency types, including traditional and/or digital currencies, centralized and/or de-centralized currencies, cryptocurrencies, and any other medium of exchange (e.g., credit, gift cards or certificates, points in a user point system, etc.), between client devices and/or external systems in different areas, regions, or jurisdictions.”
The documents do not mention Ripple (XRP) anywhere, though Ripple could have been used here as it is meant for secure and faster money transfers. Ripple is used by many international banks. Not only this, the company already had a partnership with Ripple but it is known that early tests with Ripple did not indicate any efficiency.
Ripple (XRP) is known for making cross-border payments cheaper and is also tailor-made for the business of money transfer. The firm entered into a partnership with San Francisco-based blockchain startup Ripple to conduct a trial to integrate XRP into its payment system. Hikmet Ersek, the CEO, said that he wasn’t impressed by the early results of the trials.
He further added that
“We are always criticized that Western Union is not cost-efficient, blah blah blah, but we did not see that part of the efficiency yet during our tests. The practical matter is it’s still too expensive”.
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