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Accenture’s Trust Framework

4 April 2018

U.S. Patent No. 9,928,290

Title : Trust Framework for Platform Data

Assignee : Accenture Global Solutions Limited

Priority Date : August 17, 2015

Issue Date : March 27, 2018

Inventor : Steven Tiell

U.S. Patent No. 9,928,290 (“the ‘290 Patent”) discloses innovative technology complimenting Blockchain technology.  The ‘290 Patent utilizes the inherent veracity of “data” stored on a blockchain.  With priority dating back to August 17, 2015, the ‘290 Patent was issued on March 27, 2018.

The ‘290 Patent discloses a “Trust Framework” for interacting with a “super-platform.”  The super-platform is a term for a centralized computing system operative to “receive, analyze, aggregate, store, distribute, and/or otherwise process data generated by any number of individual platforms.”

 

In other words, the super-platform is a data aggregator receiving information from any number of other systems.  This super-platform receives data from (1) data disclosers; (2) data manipulators; and (3) data consumers.  Col. 4, ll. 21-54.

 

The ‘290 Patent includes innovative and unique techniques for aggregating and managing aggregated data.  For example, the inclusion of metadata 106 offers a wide variety of options for not only data integrity, but also user-management of the data.

 

Coming on the eve of Cambridge Analytica, this offers a novel and timely solution for understanding how your personal information is being used.

 

Relative to Blockchain technology (which is why this is here) – the ‘290 Patent seems to use Blockchain technology for data accuracy and integrity.  The Super-Platform 108 includes “Data Tracking information 118,” e.g. blockchains.  The specification notes that “the data tracking information 118 may include a blockchain for each portion of the data.”

 

The data tracking information “provides transparency into the transactions and ownership of the data 104 as it is processed and/or transferred among entities.”  (col. 10, ll. 37-40).  The ‘290 Patent further notes that “the data tracking information 118 includes a blockchain for a portion of data 104, where a portion may be one or more records, one or more data objects, or any other amount of data.”  (col. 15, ll. 3-6).

 

The ‘290 Patent offers an innovative solution for combining the management of data with tools for insuring accuracy and veracity of said data.  This super-platform can then aggregate data from multiple sources and harness the trust of a distributed ledger system.

 

So here is my confusion.  I hate to say this – as I have the highest regard for both Accenture and the law firm that drafted this application – but I am unclear on the language used in the ‘290 Patent.  Col. 15, lines 3-4 states that “the data tracking information 118 includes a blockchain for a portion of data 104.”

 

The ‘290 Patent then includes a very nice one and a half column discussion of what is a Blockchain, including the statement that “a Blockchain is a public ledger of all transactions that have ever been executed in one or more contexts.”

 

Thus, can you read the ‘290 Patent to assert that you are including a public ledger as part of the data tracking information?  The actual ledger itself?

 

Rather, must or should you infer that the data tracking information 118a would include a reference to a block or blocks in a Blockchain.  If you are dealing with a particular piece of data, would you not reference the data and where it is stored on the distributed ledger?  Would you not reference a node or set of nodes, or even broader just list the name of the distributed ledger itself?

 

Claim 1 recites : “determining data tracking information … the data tracking information including a blockchain associated with the data;” “based at least partly on the data tracking information, determining a data consumer trust metric…”

 

Stated more simply: does the ‘290 Patent, by saying the data tracking information includes “a blockchain,” mean that this is the name of the blockchain or does this mean you are creating a new blockchain?  It would seem the logical interpretation is that the data tracking information includes a Blockchain identifier identifying a Blockchain having “data associated with the at least one end-user” stored thereon.  One could argue this is inherently disclosed by the “Platform ID for data provider” and “Pointer to user data record” in Fig. 2.

 

Regardless, the ‘290 Patent further advances the use of aggregated data by inclusion of a trust-factor associated a blockchain storage.  This is a great example of how Blockchain technology is being integrated into all areas of data management.

 

The ‘290 Patent was prosecuted by Fish & Richardson.

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