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JPMorgan Chase files bitcoin-style payment patent

JPMorgan Chase has filed a patent with the US patent office for a computerised payment system that has elements that resemble the bitcoin digital currency.

The new system will allow customers to make anonymous, electronic payments over the internet, without having to provide personal or account details.

According to the patent application, which was originally filed in 1999 and has recently been updated, the system will compete with the traditional payment methods of debit and credit cards.

JPMorgan's payment system would see the creation of "virtual cash" that would be housed in an online wallet, which is reminiscent of the files that hold bitcoins on behalf of users.

"While new internet payment mechanisms have been rapidly emerging, consumers and merchants have been happily conducting a growing volume of commerce using basic credit card functionality," the firm noted in the application.

"None of the emerging efforts to date have gotten more than a toehold in the marketplace and momentum continues to build in favour of credit cards."

By Gary Cooper