We could soon be witnessing the end of replay attacks on permissioned blockchain networks as IBM received a patent for a technology that enhances the security of permissioned blockchains on March 12, 2019.
IBM has been up to a lot lately. In between opening their new center in Melbourne, Australia and teaming up with CULedger to develop credit union blockchains, they have found time to add yet another patent to their ever-growing list.
The latest patent, published on March 12, 2019, is for improving the security of permissioned blockchain networks.
Titled “Resisting replay attacks efficiently in a permissioned and privacy-preserving blockchain network,” the patent will work to prevent replay attacks on blockchain networks while making sure that user permissions and privacy are kept intact.
A replay attack is a situation in which data being transmitted across the blockchain is repeated or delayed by malicious parties. In the case of a blockchain, the malicious party will replay a message that was seen on the blockchain. As a result, the network will repeat the effects of the message without the sender making such a request.
To prevent this from happening, IBM’s technology will create a channel of communication and secure the validation of transactions within the network.
The patent writes:
“In a network of computer systems, a method of communication may comprise at a user computer system, generating a security value that is to be used only once, generating a message signed with a security certificate and including the security value, and transmitting the message over the network of computer systems,”
Each transaction within the network will be given a unique security certificate as well as a unique security value that can only be used one time. These serve to indicate that the network of computer systems is permitted to execute a transaction before the said transaction is carried out by the network itself.
Securing the Chain
The security of blockchain networks cannot be taken for granted as any compromise could lead to a potentially devastating result, as seen in the double spend attacks that took place on the Ethereum Classic Network in January 2019.
This technology from IBM could prevent a unique set of attacks on networks by ensuring that only authorized computer networks can carry out transactions and locking out any unauthorized parties from making malicious transactions.