It looks as if the online payment processing giant PayPal is about to incorporate cyber currencies into its system; the company has reportedly lodged a patent application with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office that includes a lengthy description of how it manages virtual currencies, specifically naming bitcoin, Litecoin and Dogecoin.
The application’s abstract describes a modular payment system that includes a chassis which has a modular device connector. A payment database in the chassis stores funding source information and security information.
A payment module engine in the chassis determines that the modular device connector has been connected to a device frame, and it retrieves identifying information from the device. The module then determines that the identifying information matches an authorized device identified by the security information in the database and, in response, enables the transmission of the funding source information to conduct a transaction.
PayPal hinted at the integration of bitcoin as long ago as 2014, reports the publication Cryptocoin News, which notes that PayPal revealed in a SEC filing that its merchants could begin accepting bitcoin via integration with Braintree.
It also announced partnerships with Coinbase, BitPay and GoCoin. At the time, it released a video hinting at bitcoin integration.
Last November Bitwala, a cryptocurrency-to-SEPA payment service, announced it was allowing users to send bitcoin to PayPal Euro accounts.
In a further indication of PayPal interest in the sector, the payment processor announced earlier this year that it has appointed Wences Casares to its board of directors. Casares is the founder and CEO of bitcoin start up Xapo.