Category Archives: Fintech Services

Facebook’s Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company

Forbes | | June 17, 2019

mark Z. facebook - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong CompanyAll the signs are that Facebook is about to launch its cryptocurrency on June 18, a project known internally as Libra, and that soon, apparently, we will all be using. So what are the implications of a company with 2.4 billion users launching its own currency?

Strategically, the movement makes sense for Facebook: at a time when many question the its dominance of social networks and when a majority of its own shareholders say they want to see the back of Mark Zuckerberg, the company announces a very ambitious project of universal appeal giving it a central role in the world economy, in the wake of innumerable cryptocurrency projects of dubious legality, irresponsibly speculative and wasteful in terms of energy, aimed among others at people in countries with unstable currencies or limited banking penetration. As Jack Dorsey has said, this maybe the perfect moment to create a universal currency for the Internet era, reflecting the trend toward a universalization of the world. However, what is less clear is whether this currency should be in the hands of Facebook.

See:  FaceCoin: Here’s What Facebook Could Build In Blockchain And Cryptocurrency

Technically, the project is not terribly interesting: although the company has hired a lot of talent with experience in the world of cryptocurrencies, what it has built is a stablecoin anchored to a basket of currencies, securities and organizations to avoid excessive control by a single player (including Facebook), and thus any potential speculation: the company has spoken with financial institutions to provide capital in the form of billions of dollars of international fiduciary coins and low risk securities as collateral to stabilize the price of the currency. Companies interested in operating a node have to contribute $10 million to validate transactions with the currency, to vote in future operations and above all to avoid argument about Facebook’s excessive power. The company plans to cede control of its cryptocurrency to an external independent foundation based in Switzerland.

Facebook’s currency can be transferred at no cost through Facebook products, including Messenger and WhatsApp, and the company is working with retailers to accept it as payment, which may involve commissions and possibly some agreement with ATM network managers to allow exchange with other currencies. There may even be incentives for users ranging from payment for advertising to promotions of schemes similar to loyalty programs. The company may even pay interest to users for deposits in its currency, a move designed to avoid suspicion of the company holding onto interest.

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In addition to the attention the project will attract, including from the regulators, it will raise awareness of cryptocurrencies, dynamizing the environment and possibly helping it evolve. Facebook’s currency is designed to be user friendly and as easy as any other conventional currency, allowing everybody, not just the experts, to join it.

The currency will also allow us to know once and for all how many real users Facebook has: they will all need to be identified in order to prevent money laundering or other criminal uses. This will be particularly important in failed states or where few people have bank accounts.

In many ways, a universal currency, drawing on the experience of other cryptocurrencies and aimed at populations who for many reasons are outside the traditional economy sounds like a good idea. However, the problem is that the company behind has the worst reputation for privacy, along with ethical standards that have seen it involved in accusations of electoral manipulation and even genocide. As far as Facebook is concerned, its users are raw material, and the idea it would have access to my financial records terrifies me.

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NCFA Jan 2018 resize - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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Recruiting for IT Talent? Q&A with a 20-year HR Veteran

Affinity | Diane Mason | June 6, 2019

diane mason affinity - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company

Diane Mason, a 20-year HR veteran and Partner at Affinity, an IT recruitment and consulting organization shares 4 things she learned about hiring top performers and strategies for working with recruiters to yield the best results:

1. Find a Recruiter who can Work with Your Internal Processes

This can be a real barrier to using external recruitment vendor. No wonder business leaders get push back from HR on using external hiring resources; it’s because they are often measured on the cost per hire!  That’s okay, however there may be other important measures for them to be measured on such as; the quality of hire, cost of an open vacancy, turnover costs etc. Sometimes, the best candidates are not applying to job postings – they are too busy working! If HR and hiring processes are a barrier to using external recruitment, try changing the measures or the selecting a partner who can work with them, not against them.

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2. The Importance of Looking beyond the Words on the Resume

In my HR role, I did not want a resume/posting matching service.  I needed help with the difficult, time consuming part of finding talent; understanding a person’s story behind the words on their resume.  It’s important to spend the time to understand their journey, why they did what they did, how did they go about achieving their goals, their behaviours and values. Have you ever asked your recruiting partner how they do that?

3. Speed Does not Guarantee Quality

As an HR leader, I found putting many recruitment agencies on one job rarely gave me better quality candidates faster. It just diminished the time I could spend with each recruiter and I didn’t give them the proper information they needed. The large agencies often use a call centre recruiting style, having several people spending on average 10-15 minutes on a call with potential candidates to be the first to show you a resume. Not only is this not a good candidate experience, this is not going to get you the top candidate. It is certainly not going to save you time by reviewing the wrong candidate – unless there is luck involved.  Try selecting one good partner and give them the opportunity to conduct a proper search.

4. You will Yield Better Results when Your Recruiter has a Better Understanding of Your Business

IT vendors who are helping you build your internal systems will spend time with your teams to have a better understanding of your needs, so do the same with recruitment vendors. You can have an external recruiter fill job requisitions for you by matching resumes to a job posting, or you can partner with them and let them into your business to understand it so they can deliver better service. Some examples of what that may look like are; inviting them to an employee meeting, a company event, a department lunch and learn or even meet the leaders the roles will report to.

 

Diane Mason - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong CompanyDiane Mason, Partner, Affinity Group

For the last 20 years, Diane held HR leadership roles for a variety of Fortune 500 and start up companies such as; Loblaws, PC Financial and Centric Health and she detested dealing with Recruitment Firms who did not provide quality service. It can lead to costly turnover, confusion within the company culture, negative impact on revenue, and time becomes consumed with people issues.  It is easy to hire the wrong person when you are desperate to find talent in a labour market where unemployment is less than 4%.


NCFA Jan 2018 resize - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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Fintech Disruptor KOHO Brings The Best Cashback Card to Market With its New Premium Offering

Koho release | June 6, 2019

Koho premium - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong CompanyTORONTO, June 05, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Weeks after announcing the close of its precedent-setting $42 million Series B fundraise, KOHO continues to push the industry forward by offering the best cashback program available to Canadians. No other prepaid card on the market offers cashback to consumers, and KOHO continues to change the rules of the game by offering 2% cashback on groceries, transportation, and dining out with its rewarding Premium full-service account.

KOHO Premium also boasts no foreign exchange fees, a slick vertical card design, free financial coaching in the app, higher balance limits, and price-matching to help users find the best deals possible — even after purchase.

For $9 a month or a discounted $84 a year, users who adopt Premium can buy their groceries at any store they want (and aren’t limited by big chain retailers). They also earn on transportation from Uber, to gas stations, to transit. What’s more, users can happily order that extra appetizer or food delivery knowing they’re earning instant cashback on all eating and drinking. For all purchases outside of those three categories, users will earn 0.5% cashback. All they need to spend per month to make the Premium upgrade more than pay for itself is $600.

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Wisdom holds that Canadians should save 20% of their annual income, but in reality the average savings rate is only 3.5%. From Premium to its RoundUp feature, which rounds transactions up to the nearest dollar or more, KOHO continues to find innovative ways to help its users save money even while they spend.

“Just like the company itself, Premium is an evolving offering that will continue to provide more value for KOHO users as they adopt it,” shared Daniel Eberhard, Founder and CEO of KOHO. “We’re constantly adapting our products to fit the lives of Canadians, to add value and help contribute to a more financially balanced future,” he added.

KOHO is offering a free 30 day trial of Premium so that users can see for themselves if the program is the right fit for them. The original KOHO offering with its 0.5% cashback and feature-rich app will always remain free. Premium is just the beginning, with many more exciting launches coming from KOHO later this summer, including the arrival of metal cards with a waitlist already thousands long.

 

About KOHO
KOHO is a quickly scaling FinTech company that offers Canadians an alternative to their traditional banking experience. With an integrated app and reloadable Visa card, users get real-time insights into their money, along with instant cashback, round-ups, automated savings goals and more. Backed by Power Corp. and Portag3, KOHO is an ambitious company looking to make a difference in the financial lives of Canadians. KOHO has raised two rounds of funding and won the NASDAQ Award for Best FinTech Co. Visit www.koho.ca for more information.

Tanya Black, Communications Strategist, tanya@koho.ca (416.666.5352)

 


NCFA Jan 2018 resize - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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CIBC, NAB, Bank Leumi launch platform to connect banks with FinTechs

Betakit | Isabelle Kirkwood | June 3,2019

CIBCcoins on background - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company, Bank Leumi of Israel, and National Australia Bank (NAB) have partnered to launch the Global Alliance FinTech Link, a digital platform developed to facilitate collaboration between banks and FinTechs.

Through the new platform, FinTechs can submit technology solutions in response to a wide range of challenges faced by banks, and the banks will then consult directly with the FinTechs. The portal is intended to open the door for companies to provide tech-driven solutions to key areas where banks want to enhance customer experiences.

“Transformative innovation is key to meeting the ever-evolving needs of clients, and this new platform gives us the opportunity to identify new and emerging technologies that will drive solutions as we build a relationship focused bank for a modern world,”

said Greg Elcich, vice president of enterprise innovation and Wealth Digital at CIBC, calling the portal a way “to help stimulate further creativity and growth in the global FinTech industry.”

The initiative, which originates from the banks’ partnership that was first formed in September 2016, seeks to offer FinTechs access to potential business partners and bring FinTech into the global banking ecosystem. Global Alliance Fintech Link, designed to enable FinTech startups to collaborate with the three financial institutions, was initially launched as a pilot, and will grow as more opportunities are added to the site.

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This is not the first time CIBC has partnered with NAB. In 2017, both banks worked with Visa to introduce a feature suite called Travel Tools to CIBC’s mobile banking app. The feature displays local exchange rate and any applicable fees users can expect to pay when completing a transaction with their Visa while travelling.

“This partnership shows that Bank Leumi, NAB and CIBC are leaders not just in thought but also in action when it comes to seeding international efforts to spur better value propositions,”

said Tamar Yassur, first executive vice president and chief digital officer at Bank Leumi. “We’re confident this new platform will help spark international innovation and creativity to enhance customer services in banking across the globe.”

Although some companies have a more adversarial relationship with financial incumbents, seeking to replace the functions of banks with tech (see Power Financial‘s FinTech ‘Justice League,’ which is an archipelago of financial services distributed across a collection of startups), others have opted to partner with financial institutions. Toronto-based Senso.AI, which recently closed a $1.5 million round of funding, has partnerships with several Canadian banks, including RBC. Zafin developed a corporate banking tool that aims to help banks manage relationships with customers. National Bank’s Easy Pay feature is powered by Montreal FinTech Mobeewave.

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NCFA Jan 2018 resize - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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Alberta Government Opportunity: Crowdfunding and Crowdlending platform RFI

ATB Financial (Government of Alberta) | May 23, 2019

ATB financial RFI crowdfunding and crowdlending platform - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company

Crowdfunding and Crowdlending platform

Opportunity Notice and Information

Organization:

ATB Financial

Organization Address:

Reference Number:

AB-2019-03314

Solicitation Number:

20.06

Solicitation Type:

Request for Information

Posting (MM/dd/yyyy):

05/15/2019
03:49:51 PM Alberta Time

Closing (MM/dd/yyyy):

05/31/2019
02:00:59 PM Alberta Time

Last Update (MM/dd/yyyy):

05/15/2019
03:49:51 PM Alberta Time

Agreement Type:

Non-Applicable

Region of Opportunity:

Open

Region of Delivery:

Alberta

Opportunity Type:

Open & Competitive

Commodity Codes:

T005A: Graphic Design Services - including website

Preview the RFI --> here


NCFA Jan 2018 resize - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

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Crowdfund Insider | JD Alois | June 20, 2019 The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has published a statutory report on Regulation Crowdfunding commonly referenced as Reg CF. The mandated report must be forwarded to Congress three years after Reg CF rules became effective (May 2016). Reg CF is the smallest of three federal “crowdfunding” exemptions allowing issuers to raise just $1.07 million from both accredited and non-accredited investors. According to the report authors: “the number of crowdfunding offerings, as well as the total amount of funding during the considered period, was relatively modest.” The report tallies activity under Reg CF from May 2016 to December 31, 2018. At the end of the period, there were 45 active Portals and 9 Broker-Dealers which had participated in at least one Reg CF offering. See: $5 million Equity crowdfunding extended to private companies Early-stage Investing – The Public gets a Seat at the Table Three platforms accounted for two-thirds of all initiated offerings and proceeds raised. SEC: the number of #RegCF #crowdfunding offerings, as well as the total amount of funding during the considered period, was relatively modest Click to Tweet According to the SEC: Between May 16, 2016, and December 31, ...
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Chambers Pivot Industries | Greg Chambers | June 20, 2019 "All I need is an investor, and I’m ready to go," she says. I'm sitting in front of a passionate entrepreneur who knows I've successfully raised millions of dollars for various businesses. After hearing her story, what I'm about to say won't be what she wants to hear, but it's true. Funding isn't her problem. There's more money out looking for a home than there are good ideas to fund. The problem, I tell her, is she hasn't decided if she wants to build a company or master the growing seed and startup capital environment. Lessons from the past I was in her seat in the late 1990s shopping my big idea from investor to investor. Eventually unsuccessful, I was forced to abandon my startup and find a job. I took two big lessons from that experience. One is that if I wanted to get a company off the ground, I needed to get much better at selling a vision to investors. Second, based on the questions the investors were asking, I needed far more evidence from customers that my idea was the right one before they’d invest. Years later, ...
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Luge Capital | Karim Gillani | June 2019 Intro:  NCFA Fintech Confidential spoke with some of Canada’s experienced fintech investors, on their background, how Canada has evolved, what we should be doing, advice to fintech founders and what keeps them awake at night.  This is part 1 of a 4 part series.   What is your background, and how did you come to co-found Luge Capital? Karim:  My background is in fintech, mobile tech, engineering, finance and strategy. Prior to Luge, I was at PayPal, leading M&A activities in Canada. I joined PayPal through its $890M acquisition of Xoom, a renowned cross-border remittance company, where I started the Corporate Development practice. I have an Engineering degree from the University of Waterloo, a Master of Finance degree from the University of London and a Master of Laws from the University of Toronto. Luge Capital was the byproduct of highly motivated LPs, and a recognition that fintech venture capital needed a kickstart at the early stages. David Nault and I co-founded Luge in early 2018 with a new model to seek out entrepreneurs in the US and Canada that not only had a drive to take over the world, but also built their ...
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CDL Team | June 18, 2019 The Libra Association announces a new initiative with the goal of increasing access to financial services and fostering financial inclusion around the world TORONTO, CANADA – Today, Creative Destruction Lab (CDL) – a not-for-profit seed-stage startup program – announces that it will be a Founding Partner of the Libra Association. CDL is keen to contribute to the success of the Libra initiative as the sole Canadian organization and academic institution in the Libra Association at present. The Libra Association will create Libra, a simple global currency and financial infrastructure that can empower billions of people. Libra will be built on a secure, scalable, and reliable blockchain; and it will be backed by a reserve of assets designed to give it intrinsic value. The Libra Association will govern the infrastructure and manage and evolve this new ecosystem. Libra will enable developers and businesses to build inclusive new financial service products for people around the world. See:  Facebook’s Libra Cryptocurrency: Everything We Know At this time, CDL is the sole academic Founding Partner of the Libra Association. The initial group of organizations that will work together on finalizing the association’s charter include: Payments: Mastercard, PayPal, PayU ...
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PC Mag | Rob Marvin | June 18, 2019 Facebook's Libra Cryptocurrency: Everything We Know Facebook's big blockchain play, consisting of the Libra coin, the nonprofit Libra Foundation, and Facebook's Calibra wallet, will create a crypto-based payments ecosystem across Facebook, Messenger, WhatsApp, and beyond. Facebook's long-rumored cryptocurrency finally got its big debut, and it's called Libra after all. Facebook today released a lengthy white paper, along with a post from Mark Zuckerberg and another from VP of blockchain David Marcus, announcing the ambitious crypto initiative and all that comes with it. The open-source Libra cryptocurrency and blockchain will be governed by the nonprofit Libra Association, while a new Facebook-owned subsidiary called Calibra will release a wallet for Libra tokens and ultimately other banking and finance products—a move that could turn Facebook into a financial services giant in addition to a social and advertising one. See:  Facebook’s Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company While the public launch of Libra won't happen until the first half of 2020, the developer testnet of the Libra blockchain is live today. There will also be a new programming language called Move for developers to build distributed applications atop the Libra blockchain, though Facebook said neither itself ...
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facebook launches libra - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company
3iQ and Mavennet | Fred Pye and Kesem Frank | June 18, 2019 Stablecoins are now a necessary step to mass adoption of cryptocurrencies, as proven by the way they’ve been used to hedge the massive volatility of the market over the past couple of years. Their simple premise enables the seamless pairing of crypto-to-fiat pegged cryptocurrency. It might sound overly simplistic, but this straightforward innovation has spurred the growth of a new crypto asset class that measures in billions of dollars in aggregate market cap (e.g. Tether, USD Coin, TrueUSD, Paxos and Gemini Dollar). As much as this asset class is still gaining momentum driven by the current and common use case, the potential of stablecoins goes well beyond the tactical value of a trading tool. Stablecoins are strategically important because they represent a bridge between legacy fiat-based systems and the new digital and decentralized currency underpinnings we collectively call “blockchain.” The dream isn’t necessarily a prediction or extension of the purist’s vision   Bitcoin - blockchain’s earliest network - was born from tumultuous years in the traditional financial system. These were years defined by mistrust; not just towards the people at the helm of the financial system, but ...
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CNBC | Kate Rooney and Hugh Son | June 10, 2019 Mobility giant Uber is looking to accelerate the creation of financial products with a new fintech outpost in New York, according to people with knowledge of the plan. The ride-hailing company is aiming to hire several dozen engineers and product managers this year, and the New York team could eventually exceed 100 workers, said the people, who declined to be identified speaking about Uber’s plans. Uber, fresh from its IPO last month, is looking to tap New York’s talent pool, which is deeper when it comes to fintech and bank workers than its hometown of San Francisco. By building out its financial ecosystem, the company can increase its lead over rivals like Lyft. The efforts are likely to be focused on ways to increase engagement and loyalty to the Uber platform, according to people who attended a recruitment event earlier this year. Payments chief Peter Hazlehurst and top engineer Johnie Lee spoke at the event, held at Uber’s New York offices, the people said. There are many possible payment and lending innovations Uber could come up with: It has 93 million active users globally, most of whom use linked ...
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Schulte Research | Paul Schulte | June 17, 2019 Digital banking finally arrives in HK --all in one go! Be careful what you wish for — you might get it.  Hong Kong People have been kvetching for years about the poor quality of banking services. Now, they will have a deluge of ultra-efficient and essentially free new services. These services will offer strictly online banking services without branches and ALL of them have very deep pockets. The first batch below, which I will enumerate in a moment, have capital to burn of about USD 250 million. This can go a long way in eroding the highly profitable cartel of HSBC and Hang Seng Bank.  Hang Seng Bank has consistently had among the highest ROE globally north of 20-21%. And its revenue per customer has been among the world’s highest as well. HSBC owns more than 40% of HSB, so it has been a cash cow for the bank. Hong Kong is really the center of profitability for HSBC, since its ROE for commonwealth countries is the single digits and it has basically given up on the US financial market.  It’s European business, like all Euro banking franchises, is in the ...
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Forbes | Enrique Dans | June 17, 2019 All the signs are that Facebook is about to launch its cryptocurrency on June 18, a project known internally as Libra, and that soon, apparently, we will all be using. So what are the implications of a company with 2.4 billion users launching its own currency? Strategically, the movement makes sense for Facebook: at a time when many question the its dominance of social networks and when a majority of its own shareholders say they want to see the back of Mark Zuckerberg, the company announces a very ambitious project of universal appeal giving it a central role in the world economy, in the wake of innumerable cryptocurrency projects of dubious legality, irresponsibly speculative and wasteful in terms of energy, aimed among others at people in countries with unstable currencies or limited banking penetration. As Jack Dorsey has said, this maybe the perfect moment to create a universal currency for the Internet era, reflecting the trend toward a universalization of the world. However, what is less clear is whether this currency should be in the hands of Facebook. See:  FaceCoin: Here’s What Facebook Could Build In Blockchain And Cryptocurrency Technically, the project ...
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mark Z. facebook - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company
PATIO TIME! Join the National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada, Spaces, Gowling WLG, LoanConnect, FrontFundr, Exponential Ventures, CoinChange, United Craft, Highlander Brew, partners and Canada's leading Fintech & Funding community in the heart of trendy Queen West for a celebratory night and prime networking mixer. Interested in disrupting the finance industry, raising capital or participating in Canada’s growing alternative investing and fintech sectors? Here's a perfect opportunity to connect with emerging fintech, blockchain, crypto, AI, stealth and marketplace startups and experts, strategize with partners, pitch investors and mingle with Toronto’s burgeoning fintech ecosystem. ANNUAL SUMMER KICKOFF EVENT Date:  THURSDAY, JULY 11, 2019 When:  Registration opens 5:30PM to 9PM+ Venue:  SPACES, 7th Floor Loft & Rooftop Patio Where:  180 John Street, Toronto, ON M5T 1X5 TICKETS - GET'M BEFORE THEY'RE GONE! $25 Early; $35 Standard; $50 Late All tickets include entrance to private event, drinks, food, lots of fun and prime networking Taxes and fees extra. No refunds after Jul 4. Ticket transfers ok. Want to pay in Crypto?  Email us for an address info@ncfacanada.org If it rains, we're covered literally inside. Checkout photos from last year's Summer networking event here and the year prior here This event is for ...
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Tech’s raid on the banks

The Economist | May 2, 2019

digital pig - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong CompanyOVER THE past two decades people across the world have seen digital services transform the economy and their lives. Taxis, films, novels, noodles, doctors and dog-walkers can all be summoned with a tap of a screen. Giant firms in retailing, carmaking and the media have been humbled by new competitors. Yet one industry has withstood the tumult: banking. In rich countries it is perfectly normal to queue in branches, correspond with your bank by post and deposit cheques stamped with the logo of firms founded in the 19th century.

See:  Why Open Banking Represents a Seismic Shift for Fintech

Yet, as our special report this week explains, technology is at last shaking up banking. In Asia payment apps are a way of life for over 1bn users. In the West mobile banking is reaching critical mass—49% of Americans bank on their phones—and tech giants are muscling in. Apple unveiled a credit card with Goldman Sachs on March 25th. Facebook is proposing a payments service to let users buy tickets and settle bills (see article).

The implications are profound because banks are not ordinary firms. It is one thing for Blockbuster Video to be wiped out by a technological shift, but quite another if the victim is Bank of America. It is not just that banks have over $100trn of assets globally. Using the difficult trick of “maturity transformation” (turning deposits that you can demand back at any time into long-term loans) they enable savers to defer consumption and investment and borrowers to bring them forward. Banks are so vital that the economy reels when they stumble, as the crisis of 2008-09 showed.

Bankers and politicians may thus be tempted to resist technological change. But that would be wrong because its benefits—a leaner, more user-friendly and more open financial system—easily outweigh the risks.

Banking is late to the smartphone age because entrepreneurs have been put off by regulations. And, since the financial crisis, Western banks have been preoccupied with repairing their balance-sheets and old-fashioned cost-cutting. Late is better than never, however. Several new business models are emerging. In Asia payment apps are bundled with e-commerce, chat and ride-hailing services offered by firms such as Alibaba and Tencent in China and Grab in South-East Asia. These networks link to banks but are vying to control the customer relationship. In America and Europe big banks are still more or less in control and are rushing to offer digital products—JPMorgan Chase can open a deposit account in five minutes. But threats loom. Mobile-only “neobanks” that do not bear the cost of branches are nibbling at customer bases. Payments firms like PayPal work with Western banks but are expected to capture a greater share of profits. Lucrative niches like foreign exchange and asset management are being harried by new entrants.

See:  Open banking data tapped to speed up laundering checks

The pace of change will accelerate. Younger people no longer stay with the same bank as their parents—15% of British 18- to 23-year-olds use a neobank. Tech firms that people trust, such as Apple and Amazon, are natural candidates to grow big financial arms. The biggest four American banks are spending a total of over $25bn a year on perfecting better customer applications and learning to mine data more cleverly. Venture-capital firms invested $37bn in upstart financial firms last year.

The benefits of technological change are likely to be vast. Costs should tumble as branches are shut, creaking mainframe systems retired and bureaucracy culled. If the world’s listed banks chopped expenses by a third, the saving would be worth $80 a year for every person on Earth. In 2000 the Netherlands had more bank branches per head than America; it now has just a third as many. Rotten service will improve—it is easier to get money to a friend using a chat app than it is to ask your bank to transfer cash. The system will get better at its vital job of allocating capital. Richer data will allow banks to take risks that currently baffle underwriters. Fraud should be easier to spot. Lower costs and the democratising effect of social media will give more people better access to finance. And more firms with good ideas should be able to get loans faster, boosting growth.

Yet change also poses risks. Because the financial system is embedded in the economy, innovation tends to create turbulence. The credit card’s arrival in 1950 revolutionised shopping but also sparked America’s consumer-debt culture. Securitisation lubricated capital markets in the 1980s but fuelled the subprime crisis. In addition, it is unclear who will win today’s battle. One dystopian scenario is that power becomes more concentrated, as a few big banks learn to exploit data as ruthlessly as social-media firms do. Imagine a crossbreed of Facebook and Wells Fargo that predicts and manipulates how customers behave and is able to use proprietary economic data to squeeze rivals.

See:  Fintech firms want to shake up banking, and that worries the Fed

Another dystopia involves fragmentation and destabilisation. Banks could lose depositors to untested neobanks, creating a mismatch between their assets and liabilities that could lead to a credit crunch. If bank customers transact via tech or payment platforms, banks could end up with huge balance-sheets but without a direct connection to their clients. If they thus became unprofitable, they could be broken up, with the job of financing mortgages and absorbing short-term savings left entirely to capital markets, which are volatile.

Continue to the full article --> here


NCFA Jan 2018 resize - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

Latest news - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong CompanyFF Logo 400 v3 - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Companycommunity social impact - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company
NCFA Summer Kickoff Event Jul 11 banner resize - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company

Crowdfund Insider | JD Alois | June 20, 2019 The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has published a statutory report on Regulation Crowdfunding commonly referenced as Reg CF. The mandated report must be forwarded to Congress three years after Reg CF rules became effective (May 2016). Reg CF is the smallest of three federal “crowdfunding” exemptions allowing issuers to raise just $1.07 million from both accredited and non-accredited investors. According to the report authors: “the number of crowdfunding offerings, as well as the total amount of funding during the considered period, was relatively modest.” The report tallies activity under Reg CF from May 2016 to December 31, 2018. At the end of the period, there were 45 active Portals and 9 Broker-Dealers which had participated in at least one Reg CF offering. See: $5 million Equity crowdfunding extended to private companies Early-stage Investing – The Public gets a Seat at the Table Three platforms accounted for two-thirds of all initiated offerings and proceeds raised. SEC: the number of #RegCF #crowdfunding offerings, as well as the total amount of funding during the considered period, was relatively modest Click to Tweet According to the SEC: Between May 16, 2016, and December 31, ...
Read More
RegCF SEC report - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company
Chambers Pivot Industries | Greg Chambers | June 20, 2019 "All I need is an investor, and I’m ready to go," she says. I'm sitting in front of a passionate entrepreneur who knows I've successfully raised millions of dollars for various businesses. After hearing her story, what I'm about to say won't be what she wants to hear, but it's true. Funding isn't her problem. There's more money out looking for a home than there are good ideas to fund. The problem, I tell her, is she hasn't decided if she wants to build a company or master the growing seed and startup capital environment. Lessons from the past I was in her seat in the late 1990s shopping my big idea from investor to investor. Eventually unsuccessful, I was forced to abandon my startup and find a job. I took two big lessons from that experience. One is that if I wanted to get a company off the ground, I needed to get much better at selling a vision to investors. Second, based on the questions the investors were asking, I needed far more evidence from customers that my idea was the right one before they’d invest. Years later, ...
Read More
hunter to prey - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company
Luge Capital | Karim Gillani | June 2019 Intro:  NCFA Fintech Confidential spoke with some of Canada’s experienced fintech investors, on their background, how Canada has evolved, what we should be doing, advice to fintech founders and what keeps them awake at night.  This is part 1 of a 4 part series.   What is your background, and how did you come to co-found Luge Capital? Karim:  My background is in fintech, mobile tech, engineering, finance and strategy. Prior to Luge, I was at PayPal, leading M&A activities in Canada. I joined PayPal through its $890M acquisition of Xoom, a renowned cross-border remittance company, where I started the Corporate Development practice. I have an Engineering degree from the University of Waterloo, a Master of Finance degree from the University of London and a Master of Laws from the University of Toronto. Luge Capital was the byproduct of highly motivated LPs, and a recognition that fintech venture capital needed a kickstart at the early stages. David Nault and I co-founded Luge in early 2018 with a new model to seek out entrepreneurs in the US and Canada that not only had a drive to take over the world, but also built their ...
Read More
luge capital - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company
CDL Team | June 18, 2019 The Libra Association announces a new initiative with the goal of increasing access to financial services and fostering financial inclusion around the world TORONTO, CANADA – Today, Creative Destruction Lab (CDL) – a not-for-profit seed-stage startup program – announces that it will be a Founding Partner of the Libra Association. CDL is keen to contribute to the success of the Libra initiative as the sole Canadian organization and academic institution in the Libra Association at present. The Libra Association will create Libra, a simple global currency and financial infrastructure that can empower billions of people. Libra will be built on a secure, scalable, and reliable blockchain; and it will be backed by a reserve of assets designed to give it intrinsic value. The Libra Association will govern the infrastructure and manage and evolve this new ecosystem. Libra will enable developers and businesses to build inclusive new financial service products for people around the world. See:  Facebook’s Libra Cryptocurrency: Everything We Know At this time, CDL is the sole academic Founding Partner of the Libra Association. The initial group of organizations that will work together on finalizing the association’s charter include: Payments: Mastercard, PayPal, PayU ...
Read More
CDL libra - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company
PC Mag | Rob Marvin | June 18, 2019 Facebook's Libra Cryptocurrency: Everything We Know Facebook's big blockchain play, consisting of the Libra coin, the nonprofit Libra Foundation, and Facebook's Calibra wallet, will create a crypto-based payments ecosystem across Facebook, Messenger, WhatsApp, and beyond. Facebook's long-rumored cryptocurrency finally got its big debut, and it's called Libra after all. Facebook today released a lengthy white paper, along with a post from Mark Zuckerberg and another from VP of blockchain David Marcus, announcing the ambitious crypto initiative and all that comes with it. The open-source Libra cryptocurrency and blockchain will be governed by the nonprofit Libra Association, while a new Facebook-owned subsidiary called Calibra will release a wallet for Libra tokens and ultimately other banking and finance products—a move that could turn Facebook into a financial services giant in addition to a social and advertising one. See:  Facebook’s Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company While the public launch of Libra won't happen until the first half of 2020, the developer testnet of the Libra blockchain is live today. There will also be a new programming language called Move for developers to build distributed applications atop the Libra blockchain, though Facebook said neither itself ...
Read More
facebook launches libra - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company
3iQ and Mavennet | Fred Pye and Kesem Frank | June 18, 2019 Stablecoins are now a necessary step to mass adoption of cryptocurrencies, as proven by the way they’ve been used to hedge the massive volatility of the market over the past couple of years. Their simple premise enables the seamless pairing of crypto-to-fiat pegged cryptocurrency. It might sound overly simplistic, but this straightforward innovation has spurred the growth of a new crypto asset class that measures in billions of dollars in aggregate market cap (e.g. Tether, USD Coin, TrueUSD, Paxos and Gemini Dollar). As much as this asset class is still gaining momentum driven by the current and common use case, the potential of stablecoins goes well beyond the tactical value of a trading tool. Stablecoins are strategically important because they represent a bridge between legacy fiat-based systems and the new digital and decentralized currency underpinnings we collectively call “blockchain.” The dream isn’t necessarily a prediction or extension of the purist’s vision   Bitcoin - blockchain’s earliest network - was born from tumultuous years in the traditional financial system. These were years defined by mistrust; not just towards the people at the helm of the financial system, but ...
Read More
stablecoins  - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company
CNBC | Kate Rooney and Hugh Son | June 10, 2019 Mobility giant Uber is looking to accelerate the creation of financial products with a new fintech outpost in New York, according to people with knowledge of the plan. The ride-hailing company is aiming to hire several dozen engineers and product managers this year, and the New York team could eventually exceed 100 workers, said the people, who declined to be identified speaking about Uber’s plans. Uber, fresh from its IPO last month, is looking to tap New York’s talent pool, which is deeper when it comes to fintech and bank workers than its hometown of San Francisco. By building out its financial ecosystem, the company can increase its lead over rivals like Lyft. The efforts are likely to be focused on ways to increase engagement and loyalty to the Uber platform, according to people who attended a recruitment event earlier this year. Payments chief Peter Hazlehurst and top engineer Johnie Lee spoke at the event, held at Uber’s New York offices, the people said. There are many possible payment and lending innovations Uber could come up with: It has 93 million active users globally, most of whom use linked ...
Read More
Dara Khosrowshahi CEO uber tech - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company
Schulte Research | Paul Schulte | June 17, 2019 Digital banking finally arrives in HK --all in one go! Be careful what you wish for — you might get it.  Hong Kong People have been kvetching for years about the poor quality of banking services. Now, they will have a deluge of ultra-efficient and essentially free new services. These services will offer strictly online banking services without branches and ALL of them have very deep pockets. The first batch below, which I will enumerate in a moment, have capital to burn of about USD 250 million. This can go a long way in eroding the highly profitable cartel of HSBC and Hang Seng Bank.  Hang Seng Bank has consistently had among the highest ROE globally north of 20-21%. And its revenue per customer has been among the world’s highest as well. HSBC owns more than 40% of HSB, so it has been a cash cow for the bank. Hong Kong is really the center of profitability for HSBC, since its ROE for commonwealth countries is the single digits and it has basically given up on the US financial market.  It’s European business, like all Euro banking franchises, is in the ...
Read More
global network and points of presence maps - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company
Forbes | Enrique Dans | June 17, 2019 All the signs are that Facebook is about to launch its cryptocurrency on June 18, a project known internally as Libra, and that soon, apparently, we will all be using. So what are the implications of a company with 2.4 billion users launching its own currency? Strategically, the movement makes sense for Facebook: at a time when many question the its dominance of social networks and when a majority of its own shareholders say they want to see the back of Mark Zuckerberg, the company announces a very ambitious project of universal appeal giving it a central role in the world economy, in the wake of innumerable cryptocurrency projects of dubious legality, irresponsibly speculative and wasteful in terms of energy, aimed among others at people in countries with unstable currencies or limited banking penetration. As Jack Dorsey has said, this maybe the perfect moment to create a universal currency for the Internet era, reflecting the trend toward a universalization of the world. However, what is less clear is whether this currency should be in the hands of Facebook. See:  FaceCoin: Here’s What Facebook Could Build In Blockchain And Cryptocurrency Technically, the project ...
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mark Z. facebook - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company
PATIO TIME! Join the National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada, Spaces, Gowling WLG, LoanConnect, FrontFundr, Exponential Ventures, CoinChange, United Craft, Highlander Brew, partners and Canada's leading Fintech & Funding community in the heart of trendy Queen West for a celebratory night and prime networking mixer. Interested in disrupting the finance industry, raising capital or participating in Canada’s growing alternative investing and fintech sectors? Here's a perfect opportunity to connect with emerging fintech, blockchain, crypto, AI, stealth and marketplace startups and experts, strategize with partners, pitch investors and mingle with Toronto’s burgeoning fintech ecosystem. ANNUAL SUMMER KICKOFF EVENT Date:  THURSDAY, JULY 11, 2019 When:  Registration opens 5:30PM to 9PM+ Venue:  SPACES, 7th Floor Loft & Rooftop Patio Where:  180 John Street, Toronto, ON M5T 1X5 TICKETS - GET'M BEFORE THEY'RE GONE! $25 Early; $35 Standard; $50 Late All tickets include entrance to private event, drinks, food, lots of fun and prime networking Taxes and fees extra. No refunds after Jul 4. Ticket transfers ok. Want to pay in Crypto?  Email us for an address info@ncfacanada.org If it rains, we're covered literally inside. Checkout photos from last year's Summer networking event here and the year prior here This event is for ...
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NCFA Summer Kickoff Event Jul 11 v3 - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company

 

Is Apple Pay Safe?

US News | By Ben Luthi | Apr 12, 2019

apple pay and security 1 - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong CompanyApple Pay is secure and convenient, as long as you use it correctly.

No payment method is entirely safe from fraud. But Apple Pay provides cardholders with several layers of security that can protect against some common forms of credit card theft.

If you want to try Apple Pay, knowing how it works is important as well as how your credit card information is safeguarded and what you can do to stay protected while using it.

What Is Apple Pay?

Apple Pay is a mobile wallet for Apple devices such as iPhones and Apple Watches that allows you to make purchases in stores, in apps and online securely without handing over your credit card information every time.

See:  The growing cost of cybersecurity

In a store, the mobile wallet uses near-field communication technology – it allows two devices placed within a few centimeters of each other to exchange data – to transmit your card information. You just need to verify your identity with the Touch ID or Face ID feature, then tap your device to the store's card reader to process the payment.

To keep your information private, Apple Pay creates a unique token every time you use it, so merchants never get your actual card number. "Instead of being static data that is easily cloned if stolen," says Andrew Barratt, managing principal at Coalfire, a cybersecurity advisory firm, "it adds some dynamic elements to the data that are used when processing your card payment, making cloning for fraudulent use more difficult."

What's more, Apple doesn't store your card number on your device or its own servers.

Why Apple Pay Is More Secure Than Using a Physical Card

Trusting technology can be scary, especially if you're accustomed to a certain process. But using Apple Pay can protect your credit card information in ways that using the card can't.

It requires extra verification. With a physical credit card, all a thief needs to successfully make a purchase is your card and a merchant who doesn't match cards with IDs. And the four credit card payment networks – Visa, Mastercard, American Express and Discover – no longer require signatures.

With Apple Pay, however, someone who steals your device will have a hard time using it to make purchases. The app requires that you verify your identity using your passcode or the Touch ID or Face ID feature, and the latter two can be tough to fake.

It doesn't share your card information. Every time you make a purchase with Apple Pay, whether in a store, in an app or online, the mobile wallet creates a unique code for processing the transaction instead of sharing your credit card number.

"The credit card number is never given to the merchant, and when used online, never travels across the internet between your device and the merchant site," says Thomas Reed, director of Mac and mobile at cybersecurity firm Malwarebytes. "If by some chance a criminal were to intercept this data, it's a one-time-use code, so it couldn't be abused in the same manner as a credit card number."

See:  Global payments: Expansive growth, targeted opportunities

Your credit card's EMV chip uses the same technology, called tokenization. But not all merchants have chip readers, and EMV chips don't work when you make in-app and online purchases. As a result, Apple Pay can especially be helpful for mobile and online shopping, where storing your credit card information could make it vulnerable to data breaches.

Your information can't be skimmed. If you're shopping with a merchant who requires you to swipe your card instead of use the chip, the static information on the magnetic strip can easily be stolen if a thief has installed a card-skimming device on the card reader.

Because Apple Pay doesn't share static information or require a swipe, Barratt says, it's significantly safer than using a physical card in that way.

It doesn't store your card information on your device. Apple neither shares your card information with merchants nor keeps your card information on your device or its own servers.

"An attacker who gains access to your device or your iCloud account would not be able to get your credit card information," Reed says. The same goes if a hacker somehow manages to gain access to Apple's servers.

You can suspend the service. If you've activated the Find My iPhone feature or a similar feature on another Apple device, you can suspend the Apple Pay app by placing your device in "lost mode." This will keep you from having to cancel all of your credit cards, which is what you'd need to do if you think someone has stolen your wallet.

Tips for Staying Safe When Using Apple Pay

Serious security concerns have not emerged with the technology Apple Pay uses, but some potential pitfalls await if you're not careful with your device. Here are some tips for ensuring that your device and your credit cards stay safe.

Keep your device passcode secure. Even if you use the Face ID or Touch ID features, you're required to have a passcode on your Apple device as an alternate way to verify that it's yours.

See:  Inside the power struggle between big banks and fintechs to modernize financial services

If you share your passcode with others or use one that's easy to crack – such as 0000 or 1234 – it could give them easy access to create their own biometric profile. Biometrics allow consumers to be ID'd and authenticated based on a set of recognizable and verifiable data specific to them, such as fingerprints.

If they can create their own profile, they'll be able to make purchases through your Apple Pay function.

Set up Face ID or Touch ID. While biometrics aren't required to use Apple Pay, they're not as easy to get past as a four-digit passcode.

Don't allow others to add their biometrics. Permitting a significant other, family member or friend to add Face ID or Touch ID credentials to your phone may not seem like a big deal. But if the relationship turns sour, they'd have easy access to use your Apple Pay app if they can get hold of your device.

Avoid adding cards on an unsecure Wi-Fi network. Public Wi-Fi networks are convenient ways to get online at the coffee shop or the airport. But be wise about what you do when you're connected.

That's because hackers can effectively eavesdrop on the information you send from your device to a service or website. Fraudsters can even create a counterfeit mobile wallet registration system similar to Apple Pay's and lure you into sending them your card information unknowingly.

Continue to the full article --> here

 


NCFA Jan 2018 resize - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company The National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association (NCFA Canada) is a financial innovation ecosystem that provides education, market intelligence, industry stewardship, networking and funding opportunities and services to thousands of community members and works closely with industry, government, partners and affiliates to create a vibrant and innovative fintech and funding industry in Canada. Decentralized and distributed, NCFA is engaged with global stakeholders and helps incubate projects and investment in fintech, alternative finance, crowdfunding, peer-to-peer finance, payments, digital assets and tokens, blockchain, cryptocurrency, regtech, and insurtech sectors. Join Canada's Fintech & Funding Community today FREE! Or become a contributing member and get perks. For more information, please visit: www.ncfacanada.org

Latest news - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong CompanyFF Logo 400 v3 - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Companycommunity social impact - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company
NCFA Summer Kickoff Event Jul 11 banner resize - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company

Crowdfund Insider | JD Alois | June 20, 2019 The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has published a statutory report on Regulation Crowdfunding commonly referenced as Reg CF. The mandated report must be forwarded to Congress three years after Reg CF rules became effective (May 2016). Reg CF is the smallest of three federal “crowdfunding” exemptions allowing issuers to raise just $1.07 million from both accredited and non-accredited investors. According to the report authors: “the number of crowdfunding offerings, as well as the total amount of funding during the considered period, was relatively modest.” The report tallies activity under Reg CF from May 2016 to December 31, 2018. At the end of the period, there were 45 active Portals and 9 Broker-Dealers which had participated in at least one Reg CF offering. See: $5 million Equity crowdfunding extended to private companies Early-stage Investing – The Public gets a Seat at the Table Three platforms accounted for two-thirds of all initiated offerings and proceeds raised. SEC: the number of #RegCF #crowdfunding offerings, as well as the total amount of funding during the considered period, was relatively modest Click to Tweet According to the SEC: Between May 16, 2016, and December 31, ...
Read More
RegCF SEC report - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company
Chambers Pivot Industries | Greg Chambers | June 20, 2019 "All I need is an investor, and I’m ready to go," she says. I'm sitting in front of a passionate entrepreneur who knows I've successfully raised millions of dollars for various businesses. After hearing her story, what I'm about to say won't be what she wants to hear, but it's true. Funding isn't her problem. There's more money out looking for a home than there are good ideas to fund. The problem, I tell her, is she hasn't decided if she wants to build a company or master the growing seed and startup capital environment. Lessons from the past I was in her seat in the late 1990s shopping my big idea from investor to investor. Eventually unsuccessful, I was forced to abandon my startup and find a job. I took two big lessons from that experience. One is that if I wanted to get a company off the ground, I needed to get much better at selling a vision to investors. Second, based on the questions the investors were asking, I needed far more evidence from customers that my idea was the right one before they’d invest. Years later, ...
Read More
hunter to prey - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company
Luge Capital | Karim Gillani | June 2019 Intro:  NCFA Fintech Confidential spoke with some of Canada’s experienced fintech investors, on their background, how Canada has evolved, what we should be doing, advice to fintech founders and what keeps them awake at night.  This is part 1 of a 4 part series.   What is your background, and how did you come to co-found Luge Capital? Karim:  My background is in fintech, mobile tech, engineering, finance and strategy. Prior to Luge, I was at PayPal, leading M&A activities in Canada. I joined PayPal through its $890M acquisition of Xoom, a renowned cross-border remittance company, where I started the Corporate Development practice. I have an Engineering degree from the University of Waterloo, a Master of Finance degree from the University of London and a Master of Laws from the University of Toronto. Luge Capital was the byproduct of highly motivated LPs, and a recognition that fintech venture capital needed a kickstart at the early stages. David Nault and I co-founded Luge in early 2018 with a new model to seek out entrepreneurs in the US and Canada that not only had a drive to take over the world, but also built their ...
Read More
luge capital - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company
CDL Team | June 18, 2019 The Libra Association announces a new initiative with the goal of increasing access to financial services and fostering financial inclusion around the world TORONTO, CANADA – Today, Creative Destruction Lab (CDL) – a not-for-profit seed-stage startup program – announces that it will be a Founding Partner of the Libra Association. CDL is keen to contribute to the success of the Libra initiative as the sole Canadian organization and academic institution in the Libra Association at present. The Libra Association will create Libra, a simple global currency and financial infrastructure that can empower billions of people. Libra will be built on a secure, scalable, and reliable blockchain; and it will be backed by a reserve of assets designed to give it intrinsic value. The Libra Association will govern the infrastructure and manage and evolve this new ecosystem. Libra will enable developers and businesses to build inclusive new financial service products for people around the world. See:  Facebook’s Libra Cryptocurrency: Everything We Know At this time, CDL is the sole academic Founding Partner of the Libra Association. The initial group of organizations that will work together on finalizing the association’s charter include: Payments: Mastercard, PayPal, PayU ...
Read More
CDL libra - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company
PC Mag | Rob Marvin | June 18, 2019 Facebook's Libra Cryptocurrency: Everything We Know Facebook's big blockchain play, consisting of the Libra coin, the nonprofit Libra Foundation, and Facebook's Calibra wallet, will create a crypto-based payments ecosystem across Facebook, Messenger, WhatsApp, and beyond. Facebook's long-rumored cryptocurrency finally got its big debut, and it's called Libra after all. Facebook today released a lengthy white paper, along with a post from Mark Zuckerberg and another from VP of blockchain David Marcus, announcing the ambitious crypto initiative and all that comes with it. The open-source Libra cryptocurrency and blockchain will be governed by the nonprofit Libra Association, while a new Facebook-owned subsidiary called Calibra will release a wallet for Libra tokens and ultimately other banking and finance products—a move that could turn Facebook into a financial services giant in addition to a social and advertising one. See:  Facebook’s Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company While the public launch of Libra won't happen until the first half of 2020, the developer testnet of the Libra blockchain is live today. There will also be a new programming language called Move for developers to build distributed applications atop the Libra blockchain, though Facebook said neither itself ...
Read More
facebook launches libra - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company
3iQ and Mavennet | Fred Pye and Kesem Frank | June 18, 2019 Stablecoins are now a necessary step to mass adoption of cryptocurrencies, as proven by the way they’ve been used to hedge the massive volatility of the market over the past couple of years. Their simple premise enables the seamless pairing of crypto-to-fiat pegged cryptocurrency. It might sound overly simplistic, but this straightforward innovation has spurred the growth of a new crypto asset class that measures in billions of dollars in aggregate market cap (e.g. Tether, USD Coin, TrueUSD, Paxos and Gemini Dollar). As much as this asset class is still gaining momentum driven by the current and common use case, the potential of stablecoins goes well beyond the tactical value of a trading tool. Stablecoins are strategically important because they represent a bridge between legacy fiat-based systems and the new digital and decentralized currency underpinnings we collectively call “blockchain.” The dream isn’t necessarily a prediction or extension of the purist’s vision   Bitcoin - blockchain’s earliest network - was born from tumultuous years in the traditional financial system. These were years defined by mistrust; not just towards the people at the helm of the financial system, but ...
Read More
stablecoins  - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company
CNBC | Kate Rooney and Hugh Son | June 10, 2019 Mobility giant Uber is looking to accelerate the creation of financial products with a new fintech outpost in New York, according to people with knowledge of the plan. The ride-hailing company is aiming to hire several dozen engineers and product managers this year, and the New York team could eventually exceed 100 workers, said the people, who declined to be identified speaking about Uber’s plans. Uber, fresh from its IPO last month, is looking to tap New York’s talent pool, which is deeper when it comes to fintech and bank workers than its hometown of San Francisco. By building out its financial ecosystem, the company can increase its lead over rivals like Lyft. The efforts are likely to be focused on ways to increase engagement and loyalty to the Uber platform, according to people who attended a recruitment event earlier this year. Payments chief Peter Hazlehurst and top engineer Johnie Lee spoke at the event, held at Uber’s New York offices, the people said. There are many possible payment and lending innovations Uber could come up with: It has 93 million active users globally, most of whom use linked ...
Read More
Dara Khosrowshahi CEO uber tech - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company
Schulte Research | Paul Schulte | June 17, 2019 Digital banking finally arrives in HK --all in one go! Be careful what you wish for — you might get it.  Hong Kong People have been kvetching for years about the poor quality of banking services. Now, they will have a deluge of ultra-efficient and essentially free new services. These services will offer strictly online banking services without branches and ALL of them have very deep pockets. The first batch below, which I will enumerate in a moment, have capital to burn of about USD 250 million. This can go a long way in eroding the highly profitable cartel of HSBC and Hang Seng Bank.  Hang Seng Bank has consistently had among the highest ROE globally north of 20-21%. And its revenue per customer has been among the world’s highest as well. HSBC owns more than 40% of HSB, so it has been a cash cow for the bank. Hong Kong is really the center of profitability for HSBC, since its ROE for commonwealth countries is the single digits and it has basically given up on the US financial market.  It’s European business, like all Euro banking franchises, is in the ...
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global network and points of presence maps - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company
Forbes | Enrique Dans | June 17, 2019 All the signs are that Facebook is about to launch its cryptocurrency on June 18, a project known internally as Libra, and that soon, apparently, we will all be using. So what are the implications of a company with 2.4 billion users launching its own currency? Strategically, the movement makes sense for Facebook: at a time when many question the its dominance of social networks and when a majority of its own shareholders say they want to see the back of Mark Zuckerberg, the company announces a very ambitious project of universal appeal giving it a central role in the world economy, in the wake of innumerable cryptocurrency projects of dubious legality, irresponsibly speculative and wasteful in terms of energy, aimed among others at people in countries with unstable currencies or limited banking penetration. As Jack Dorsey has said, this maybe the perfect moment to create a universal currency for the Internet era, reflecting the trend toward a universalization of the world. However, what is less clear is whether this currency should be in the hands of Facebook. See:  FaceCoin: Here’s What Facebook Could Build In Blockchain And Cryptocurrency Technically, the project ...
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mark Z. facebook - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company
PATIO TIME! Join the National Crowdfunding & Fintech Association of Canada, Spaces, Gowling WLG, LoanConnect, FrontFundr, Exponential Ventures, CoinChange, United Craft, Highlander Brew, partners and Canada's leading Fintech & Funding community in the heart of trendy Queen West for a celebratory night and prime networking mixer. Interested in disrupting the finance industry, raising capital or participating in Canada’s growing alternative investing and fintech sectors? Here's a perfect opportunity to connect with emerging fintech, blockchain, crypto, AI, stealth and marketplace startups and experts, strategize with partners, pitch investors and mingle with Toronto’s burgeoning fintech ecosystem. ANNUAL SUMMER KICKOFF EVENT Date:  THURSDAY, JULY 11, 2019 When:  Registration opens 5:30PM to 9PM+ Venue:  SPACES, 7th Floor Loft & Rooftop Patio Where:  180 John Street, Toronto, ON M5T 1X5 TICKETS - GET'M BEFORE THEY'RE GONE! $25 Early; $35 Standard; $50 Late All tickets include entrance to private event, drinks, food, lots of fun and prime networking Taxes and fees extra. No refunds after Jul 4. Ticket transfers ok. Want to pay in Crypto?  Email us for an address info@ncfacanada.org If it rains, we're covered literally inside. Checkout photos from last year's Summer networking event here and the year prior here This event is for ...
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NCFA Summer Kickoff Event Jul 11 v3 - Facebook's Cryptocurrency: Great Idea, Wrong Company