VersaCloud's Operation Handles

In order to manage transactions individually, they need a unique identifier that cannot be forged by hackers or by accident. This requirement leads to our definition of an operation handle. For each API call our cloud-based time-limited transaction manager receives, our single entry point engine creates a unique operation handle – some sample operation handles are depicted in Figure 11.

Operation handles are defined to include the complete time stamp (including year, month, date, hours, minutes, seconds and milliseconds) for the moment the request is received by our server, plus a sequence of twenty four random hex digits (equivalent to 96 random bits).

Hence, in order to hit on such a handle by chance, there are two raised to the power of 96 possibilities (a decimal number composed of 27 digits), to be completed from one clock tick on the server to the next (this is at most sixteen milliseconds). This way brute-force attacks cannot succeed: supposing we could try a billion times per second (which is too optimistic due to current Internet speed) to commit a transaction with a forged operation handle, it would take in average as much time as the age of the solar system.

Time stamps embodied into operation handles are always defined using 'Universal Time', also known as UTC or Greenwich Time, in order to assure that all transactions are correctly time stamped, no matter in which time zone the front-end software is being used. This way, truly global environments can be handled correctly.

Random sequences of bits are also used by our cloud-based middleware server to internally identify the two most important players around: both the users demanding transactions, and the set of services provided by back-end servers, which we call solutions, are identified by random sequences of bits that operate as security certificates we call user tokens and solution tokens.

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