On Tuedays the USPTO issues new patents. Both of today's Spotlight Patents concern aspects of digital rights management. Assigned to Intertrust, the first patent addresses aspects of a trusted clearinghouse infrastructure for secure electronic commerce. Assigned to Microsoft, the second patent addresses a digital rights management system protecting consumer privacy.
8,185,473, Ginter, et al., "Trusted infrastructure support systems, methods and techniques for secure electronic commerce, electronic transactions, commerce process control and automation, distributed computing, and rights management," assigned to Intertrust.
An integrated, modular array of administrative and support services are provided for electronic commerce and electronic rights and transaction management. These administrative and support services supply a secure foundation for conducting transaction-related capabilities functioning over electronic networks can also be adapted to the specific needs of electronic commerce value chains. In one embodiment, a Distributed Commerce Utility having a secure, programmable, distributed architecture provides administrative and support services. The Distributed Commerce Utility may comprise a number of Commerce Utility Systems. These Commerce Utility Systems provide a web of infrastructure support available to, and reusable by, the entire electronic community and/or many of its participants. Different support functions can be collected together in hierarchical and/or networked relationships to suit various business models or other objectives. Modular support functions can be combined in different arrays to form different Commerce Utility Systems for different design implementations and purposes.
8,185,476, "Digital rights management system protecting consumer privacy," assigned to Microsoft.
Technologies for a Consumer Privacy Digital Rights Management system based on stable partially blind signatures that enable a license server to provide licenses for delivery to users without knowing the corresponding digital contents that users access with the license. Therefore consumer privacy is protected during license acquisition. Further, if the client DRM module in the DRM system does not disclose any information about a user's digital content access, and the messages that the client DRM module sends out are in plain text enabling verification that the client DRM module is not disclosing such information, then consumer privacy is fully protected by the DRM system.