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Alibaba's Patent For Blockchain System Allowing Admin Intervention

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Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba has filed a patent application in the U.S. for a blockchain-based transaction processing method that enables administrative intervention in illegal activities.

The patent is for the development of a system for effective administrative supervision of all accounts in a blockchain network.

As per the application with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office or USPTO, the system allows a third-party administrator to execute special transactions to halt a smart contract or freeze an account linked to illegal transactions, or intervene in a blockchain network.

A smart contract is usually a segment of codes stored in a blockchain, which provides execution conditions of the smart contract and transaction processing logic. These are self-executing, with the terms of the agreement between the parties being directly written into lines of code.

The patent document, which was initially filed in March, says while blockchain technology has many advantageous features like openness, unchangeability, and decentralization, it fails to provide conditions applied to implementing it in a regulated, real-world environment.

The patent explains, "In real life, however, there is a type of administrative intervention activities in the category of special transactions. For example, when a user performs illegal activities, a court order may be executed to freeze the user's account. However, this operation activity conflicts with smart contracts in existing blockchains and cannot be carried out."

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