Research and innovation in cybersecurity in the private banking sector has declined in the last year.

The most recent figures show that the number of patent applications in the industry stood at 79 in the three months ending November – down from 138 over the same period last year.

Figures for patent grants related to followed a similar pattern to filings – shrinking from 147 in the three months ending November last year to 128 this year.

The figures are compiled by GlobalData, who track patent filings and grants from official offices around the world. Using textual analysis, as well as official patent classifications, these patents are grouped into key thematic areas, and linked to key companies across various industries.

is one of the key areas tracked by GlobalData. It has been identified as being a key disruptive force facing companies in the coming years, and is one of the areas that companies investing resources in now are expected to reap rewards from.

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By GlobalData

The figures also provide an insight into the largest innovators in the sector.

Bank of America Corp was the top cybersecurity innovator in the private banking sector in the last quarter. The company, which has its headquarters in the United States, filed 126 related patents in the three months ending November. That was down from 129 over the same period last year.

It was followed by the United States based Wells Fargo & Co with 33 patent applications, Canada based The Toronto-Dominion Bank (21 applications), and the United States based Prudential Financial Inc (12 applications).

Wells Fargo & Co has recently ramped up R&D in cybersecurity. It saw growth of 54.5% in related patent applications in the three months ending November compared to the same period last year - the highest percentage growth out of all companies tracked with more than 10 quarterly patents in the private banking sector.