Google Acquires Patent on Speeding up SSL on Networks

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On August 6th, Google announced that https was becoming a ranking signal for Google Search.

I’m not completely sure of the implications of a discovery I made earlier today yet, but I noticed at the USPTO assignment database that Google had been assigned a patent from AT&T in June, which was officially recorded on August 8th, 2014.

USPTO Database showing Assignment of AT&T patent to Google

The patent is:

Method for content distribution in a network supporting a security protocol


Invented by Frederick Douglis, Michael Rabinovich, Aviel D. Rubin, Oliver Spatscheck
Assigned to: AT&T Corp.
US Patent 7,149,803
Granted December 12, 2006
Filed: June 8, 2001

The abstract from the patent is fairly simple, and tells us:

The present invention is directed to a method of providing content distribution services while minimizing the processing time required for security protocols such as the Secure Sockets Layer.

In short, it appears that there has been a cost in speed-related to the use of Secure Socket Layers security that the process described in this patent helps to speed up.

Is Google’s acquisition of this patent a matter of dotting all i’s and crossing all t’s?

I don’t suspect a profit motive in the purchase of the patent, but the nearness of the acquisition and the announcement of https becoming a ranking signal is interesting.

It is a sign of how careful Google has become when they consider whether or not something should play a role in the ranking of pages on the Web.

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3 thoughts on “Google Acquires Patent on Speeding up SSL on Networks”

  1. If you ever use SSL on a batch job (download/upload/process), the cost of negotiating SSL can double your cost. Any effort to optimize it is laudable.

    Also, Google is asking websites to switch over to SSL and those concerned with speed issues can now be a bit more relieved

  2. So basicly we are going to pay alot more now, if Google decides to implement this and rank people higher with SSL encryption on their websites.

    They always tweeking things them Google people, mayby they should stop it with all the algorythm changes. Panda Penguin and so on, i have seen pages really get hit. How are you suppose to know if what you do is right or wrong before you get hit? It can hit everyone.

  3. Kindof a strange idea to me. I guess the implementation of ssl is ultimately a benefit to the end user since they the websites they visit will be more compelled to implement greater security. I guess their reasoning is to make the internet more secure overall? The only problem is that rewarding the implementation of ssl ultimately has nothing to do with the relevancy of the content.

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