Patent US9462011: Determining trustworthiness of API requests
05 Jun 2017
I’m always fascinated by the patents that get filed related to APIs. Most just have an API that is part of the equation, but some of the patents are directly for an API process. It’s no secret that I’m a patent skeptic. I’m not anti-patent, I just think the process is broken when it comes to the digital world, and specifically when it comes to APIs and interoperability. Here is one of those API patents that show just how broken things are:
Title: Determining trustworthiness of API requests based on source computer applications’ responses to attack messages Number: US9462011 Owner: CA, Inc.
Abstract: A method includes receiving an application programming interface (API) request from a source computer application that is directed to a destination computer application. An attack response message that is configured to trigger operation of a defined action by the source computer application is sent to the source computer application. Deliverability of the API request to the destination computer application is controlled based on whether the attack response message triggered operation of the defined action. Related operations by API request risk assessment systems are disclosed.
I get that you might want to patent some of the secret sauce behind this process, but when it comes to APIs, and API security I’m thinking we need to keep thinks open, reusable, and interoperable. Obviously, this is just my not so the business savvy view of the world, but from my tech savvy view of how we secure APIs, patented process help nobody.
When it comes to API security you gain an advantage by providing actual solutions and doing it better than anyone else. Then you do not need to defend anything, everyone will be standing in line to buy your services because securing your APIs is critical to doing business in 2017.