On November 12, 2019, the Canadian Royal Bank (RBC) revealed that it is looking into building a cryptocurrency trading platform to facilitate customers in buying and selling of digital currencies.
The bank is also looking into allowing clients to open bank accounts holding crypto. According to the report, the coins to be made available for trading will include some of the top cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, and other digital currencies. The bank is also looking to enable the transference of funds that include cryptocurrencies.
RBC has applied for four patents in Canada and the U.S that lay out a comprehensive vision for how it might integrate crypto into its operations.
Speaking on the subject, Marc Kaufman, a lawyer from a Washington-based firm, stated:
“I can’t think of one of the big banks anywhere in the world that has a patent that directly relates to a crypto exchange.”
RBC would be the first Canadian bank to launch a cryptocurrency exchange or offer its clients crypto accounts.
A Solution Much Needed?
According to reports from The Logic, RBC bank is entertaining the possibility for the crypto exchange to function both for investments and allowing clients to make an in-store and online purchase.
The bank thinks that in this way, they can understand the way people spend their money and will also help to combat the direct threat that digital currencies can pose.
Canada has several minor cryptocurrency exchanges, but many have run into regulatory issues. Last week, Vancouver-based Einstein Exchange, which owes customers over $16 million, filed for bankruptcy.
Earlier in the year, Vancouver-based QuadrigaCX, which owes nearly $215 million, went bankrupt after its CEO died in 2018, and no one could obtain the information on the private key he used to access funds on the exchange.
RBC’s patent applications suggest how it can avoid those kinds of issues, ensuring that private keys are easily locatable, while simultaneously abiding by other guidelines, like anti-money-laundering requirements.
RBC Increasingly Leaning Toward Blockchain
RBC is already using blockchain tech in some parts of its operations. In 2017, the bank announced it was using the technology to move payments between its Canadian and American banks. In May 2019, it revealed it was using blockchain to verify client identities.
Moreover, RBC has published at least 27 blockchain-related patents in the last three years, seeking legal protection for a variety of structures, including credit scores, digital rewards, smart contracts, loan offerings, and a variety of investment mechanisms.
However, the latest patent filings by the bank seem to point to a more serious step towards cryptocurrency adoption.