Kount Inc., a unit of Keynetics Inc. of Boise that develops fraud-fighting software for online merchants, has received a U.S. patent for its system of determining where a computer is located during online transactions.

Patent No. 7,330,871, "Online Machine Data Collection and Archiving Process," describes a method for determining the physical location of a customer's computer, even if the merchant session is routed through an anonymous proxy server, Kount said last week.

It called its technique for identifying locations "proxy piercing."

A criminal in Belarus could use proxy servers to make a merchant think the customer is located in Chicago, Kount said.

The unit also said its technology enables "device fingerprinting" by collecting numerous parameters from a customer's computer that can be used in fraud detection.