The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has granted Nasdaq a patent for a blockchain-powered newswire service.The platform aims to use smart contracts to incorporate encryption and workflow features as well as maintaining a log that becomes more difficult to change over time.Nasdaq Gets Patent for Blockchain Newswire to Solve Gaps in Audit Trail Gaps and ErrorsThe patent, filed on January 27, 2017, is authored by Akbar Ansari, director of technology and chief architecture of global software development at NASDAQ. Senior vice president of enterprise architecture Thomas Fay and vice president Dominick Paniscotti also filed the patent.The document recognizes that newswire services have addressed needs of the people and organizations, including encryption features, advanced access control functionality, and workflow functionality, but these features can lead to audit trail gaps (or no audit trail at all), and the increased complexity can lead to errors.“Thus, new and improved techniques and systems for delivering and securing such time-sensitive information are continually sought after,” the document reads.The patent describes, as an example, a computer system that enables users to securely record time-sensitive information (e.g., announcements, press releases, regulatory filings, and the like) along with associated meta-data using blockchain technology.“The computer system and blockchain are programmed to allow dissemination of the information directly to selected parties at a set scheduled time by using programs or scripts […] that have been added to the blockchain according to certain example embodiments. Access to the sensitive information that is stored on the blockchain may include a multi-signature requirement that is part of the embedded scripts that make up a given blockchain transaction.”In the example above, the intended recipients of the information are then able to directly interface with the blockchain at the scheduled time […] to access information that has been securely stored thereon, the document says.Apart from building blockchain solutions, Nasdaq has been active in investing in crypto-friendly businesses, including the $190 million acquisition of exchange and real-time clearing technology provider Cinnober. The Stockholm-based firm delivers “high performance trading and post-trade solution” for cryptocurrency exchanges.The Nasdaq stock exchange is also looking to add cryptocurrency tracking tools in its Analytics Hub in order to provide investors and traders with relevant information for their investment decisions. The service uses machine learning and language processing to scour social media and other sources of information. The cryptocurrency feature is currently in the beta testing phase, according to sources at Nasdaq.Featured image from Shutterstock.