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Business Media Giant Forbes is Moving to the Blockchain

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The company, which operates a daily news web portal and prints a bi-weekly magazine, is moving its content to a distributed ledger-based platform provided by Civil, according to a blog post from Civil co-founder Matt Coolidge on Tuesday.

As part of the partnership, Forbes will begin archiving aspects of its existing content on the platform, as well as working with the startup to “experiment with new methods of reader engagement.”

Forbes senior vice president of product and technology, Salah Zalatimo, said the company is “relentlessly focused on rapid experimentation and implementation” to find how to draw in an audience, as well as how the journalism industry might look going forward.

He added:

“Forbes and Civil believe passionately in the mission of journalism, and together we can provide audiences with a level of unprecedented transparency around our content. We’ll also be able to expand the reach of our writers and identify new revenue channels over time.”

The experiment will begin next year, when Forbes begins publishing some article metadata to a blockchain platform. Should this aspect succeed for both companies, Forbes will move to publish all article metadata to Civil’s platform, according to a press release. Essentially, Forbes will be storing proof of an article’s existence on the platform.

Forbes writers and editors will see blockchain publishing tools integrated into its content management system (CMS), which will help streamline the process of adding such metadata – which includes an author’s identity and some information about sources within a piece – to the company’s platform.

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Analyst Research: A Comparative Study Between PrimeXBT and BitMEX

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The current crypto winter of 2018-2019 has brought with it a number of dramatic changes to the cryptocurrency market. Some altcoins have fallen over 90% from their all-time high. Crypto firms have been forced to lay off employees and restructure. And gone are the days when investors would simply HODL their assets and reap enormous gains.

With profits far more difficult to come by using traditional strategies, many traders have turned to BitMEX due to the platform offering advanced trading features such as 100x leverage and the ability to short-sell assets and profit off of falling crypto prices.

Over time, BitMEX has earned itself a leadership position as a result and boasts some of the highest trading volume in the entire crypto space. However, a newcomer backed by decades of brokerage experience has entered the market, offering not only the same features that helped BitMEX ascend to the top, but a wealth of other benefits that BitMEX cannot claim to offer.

A comparative study was conducted in order to find out if PrimeXBT will take the throne from BitMEX and capture crypto market share by attracting traders seeking more out of their trading experience.

PrimeXBT Versus BitMEX: Important Features Compared

The research starts with a focus on the features the two exchanges offer that are similar, and are part of what helped make BitMEX a success during the current crypto bear market.

Short-Selling

Both BitMEX and PrimeXBT offer traders the ability to short-sell assets, allowing traders to profit during downtrends. The feature is what helped put BitMEX on the map and is already part of what attracted over 150,000 users to sign up to PrimeXBT before the platform’s launch, with more rapidly joining each week.

Low Fees

While the two platforms appear very similar at first glance, this is where the differences between the two become more apparent.

Compared to Bitfinex’s 0.1% to 0.2% fees on trades, BitMEX offers low 0.075% fees on Bitcoin trading, but charges a staggering 0.25% on other trading pairs. PrimeXBT easily trumps them both with a standard 0.05% fee across all trading pairs. To incentivize new users joining the platform, PrimeXBT offers a discounted fee of 0.025% during a trader’s first month using the platform. Users must register for a free PrimeXBT account before March 10, 2019 to take advantage of the 50% off promotion.

100x Leverage

Trading with leverage is an extremely attractive option that allows a trader to risk less capital but multiply potential gains by 100 times. Both PrimeXBT and BitMEX offer industry-best 100x leverage, however, BitMEX only offers this level of high leverage on Bitcoin-based trading pairs. PrimeXBT, on the other hand, offers 1:100 leverage across all available assets including Bitcoin, Ethereum, EOS, Ripple and Litecoin.

PrimeXBT Versus BitMEX: Which Platform Offers The Most to Traders?

The study also focused on any features unique to each platform. Research shows that PrimeXBT boasts a number of features that BitMEX simply does not. The one “feature” BitMEX users routinely report that isn’t found on PrimeXBT are “order submission errors.”

Technical Analysis Tools

PrimeXBT has all the required tools to perform advanced technical analysis across crypto assets. The robust toolset includes a number of important indicators that can help traders gain an edge in the market and become more profitable.

Aggregated Liquidity

Only PrimeXBT offers aggregated liquidity from 12 industry-leading suppliers. BitMEX doesn’t even come close.

Multiple Funding Methods, No Minimum Deposit

BitMEX only allows traders to fund their accounts using Bitcoin and all contracts are settled in Bitcoin. PrimeXBT, however, lets traders deposit USD, EUR, and other cryptocurrencies in addition to Bitcoin. On Prime XBT, there is no minimum deposit. BitMEX requires a 0.001 BTC minimum.

Customizable Experience

PrimeXBT invites traders to make the platform their own by customizing it with a variety of widgets. In addition, PrimeXBT supports multiple-screens for the most advanced traders who demand the best experience the crypto industry has to offer.

Unmatched Affiliate Program

PrimeXBT is hands down an industry leader with its affiliate program, which has helped the platform “go viral” and generate significant buzz surrounding the platform’s launch. PrimeXBT’s 4-level referral program offers ten times the payouts of any other platform in the industry, including BitMEX. The program also offers lifetime payouts and referrers will even earn revenue on 2nd, 3rd, and 4th tier referrals.

PrimeXBT Versus BitMEX: Conclusion

With features like 100x leverage and the ability to short-sell assets during a bear market, it’s no surprise that BitMEX has enjoyed a comfortable position as an industry leader. But with the emergence of PrimeXBT, many of BitMEX’s key features are being overshadowed by the newcomer.

Once the market full of traders at large catch wind of PrimeXBT’s features and its potential to drive profitable trades, it won’t be long until PrimeXBT challenges BitMEX for the throne.

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JP Morgan is Rolling out the First US Bank-backed Cryptocurrency to Transform Payments Business

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The lender moves more than $6 trillion around the world every day for corporations in its massive wholesale payments business. In trials set to start in a few months, a tiny fraction of that will happen over something called “JPM Coin,” the digital token created by engineers at the New York-based bank to instantly settle payments between clients.

J.P. Morgan is preparing for a future in which parts of the essential underpinning of global capitalism, from cross-border payments to corporate debt issuance, move to the blockchain. That’s the database technology made famous by its first application, bitcoin. But in order for that future to happen, the bank needed a way to transfer money at the dizzying speed that those smart contracts closed, rather than relying on old technology like wire transfers.

“So anything that currently exists in the world, as that moves onto the blockchain, this would be the payment leg for that transaction,” said Umar Farooq, head of J.P. Morgan’s blockchain projects. “The applications are frankly quite endless; anything where you have a distributed ledger which involves corporations or institutions can use this.”

For some, J.P. Morgan’s new currency may come as an unexpected development for a technology that rose from the wreckage of the financial crisis and was supposed to disrupt the established banking world.

When the international payments are tested, it will be one of the first real-world applications for a cryptocurrency in banking. The industry has mostly shunned the asset class as too risky. Last year, J.P. Morgan and two other lenders banned the purchase of bitcoins by credit card customers. And Goldman Sachs reportedly shelved plans to create a bitcoin trading desk after exploring the idea.

Though holders of digital currencies may seize on the news that a major financial institution is issuing its own crypto as bullish for the asset class, retail investors will probably never get to own a JPM Coin. Unlike bitcoin, only big institutional clients of J.P. Morgan that have undergone regulatory checks, like corporations, banks and broker-dealers can use the tokens.

There are other key differences between the bank’s crypto and bitcoin, which J.P. Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon has bashed as a fraud that won’t end well for its investors. (To be clear, he and his managers have consistently said that blockchain, as well as digital currencies that were regulated, hold promise.)

Each JPM Coin is redeemable for a single U.S. dollar, so its value shouldn’t fluctuate, similar in concept to so-called stablecoins. Clients will be issued the coins after depositing dollars at the bank; after using the tokens for a payment or security purchase on the blockchain, the bank destroys the coins and gives clients back a commensurate number of dollars.

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HSBC Forex Trading Costs Cut Sharply by Blockchain

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HSBC has reduced the cost of settling foreign exchange trades by a quarter through its blockchain-based system, an executive overseeing the project told Reuters, offering a glimpse of the savings the technology could offer banks.

The bank processes between 3,500 and 5,000 trades a day on its “FX Everywhere” system, settling trades worth $350 billion, Mark Williamson, chief operating officer of FX cash trading and risk management, told Reuters.

The HSBC platform is a rare example of blockchain technology being put to practical use by a major bank. Last month the London-based lender said it had processed FX trades worth $250 billion on the platform since February last year.

The fresh details of the scale of the HSBC project suggest that the potential of blockchain to make significant cost savings in the financial services industry – long touted by its proponents of the technology – is being realized.

“We going at a pace now,” Williamson said. “We’re able to demonstrate that this is not a one-off proof of concept or just one or two trades.”

HSBC would not give data on overall forex trades settled by traditional processes, saying only that those settled on the platform represented a “small” proportion.

Supporters say blockchain – a shared database that can securely process and settle transactions without the need for third-party checks – could transform industries from finance to real estate by obviating cumbersome and inefficient processes.

That hype, though, has rarely been backed up by examples of large companies moving beyond tests on a limited scale.

Financial institutions have so far taken a cautious approach with the technology originally conceived to underpin of the bitcoin cryptocurrency. Many are concerned by uncertainty over security, regulation and the impact on existing systems.

HSBC coordinates payments across its Americas, Europe and Asia Pacific trading hubs on the platform, a type of blockchain known as a “shared permissioned ledger”, which allows approved multiple parties to amend and update in real time.

Williamson said that HSBC settles “billions of dollars” worth of payments every day, helping the bank to manage risk by allowing it to see real-time exposure across multiple balance sheets.

He did not give precise figure for daily transactions but said that a significant amount of overall internal flows are likely to be settled on the system.

The bank is aiming to provide the tools to corporate clients with complex, cross-border forex flows.

“The more participants that you have joining the HSBC shared permissioned ledger and the ecosystem, the more efficient we’re going to become in providing services to our clients,” Williamson said.

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Oracle Accelerates Adoption of Enterprise Blockchain Worldwide

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Businesses around the world have already reaped the benefits of blockchain applications built on Oracle Blockchain Platform. Companies using Oracle’s business-ready blockchain have been able to move from experimentation to production by creating new blockchain applications from scratch or adding blockchain functionality to an existing solution. To support its customers, Oracle has added new features to the platform that help users speed up the development, integration, and deployment of new blockchain applications.

While blockchain can greatly streamline many existing processes surrounding supply chain, identity, cross-border payments, and fraud detection, businesses have struggled to implement blockchain networks within their existing ecosystems. Oracle Blockchain Platform addresses this challenge by streamlining the process of building and integrating blockchain applications across diverse business networks and connecting them into the relevant business processes within these ecosystems.

“Oracle’s continued leadership and investment in enterprise blockchain technology ensures that the platform has all of the critical capabilities organizations need to build blockchain applications to handle their most important business transactions,” said Frank Xiong, group vice president, Blockchain Product Development, Oracle. “The number of customers already running blockchain applications based on Oracle’s blockchain platform is testament to the strength of the technology and the value it brings to a broad range of industries.”

Worldwide Customers with Blockchain Apps in Use

Using blockchain applications, Oracle customers are establishing new ways to increase trust in diverse ecosystems and increasing the speed, security and efficiency of a wide range of business processes. Oracle’s rapidly growing list of global customers with production deployments on its enterprise-grade blockchain platform include:

  • China Distance Education Holdings Limited (CDEL) uses blockchain to share educational records and professional certifications across many educational institutions to help employers and recruiters verify the educational credentials claimed by individuals.
  • Circulor uses blockchain to track conflict minerals from their origin at the mines to processing and use in electronic components to ensure ethical sourcing of raw materials.
  • SERES uses blockchain to bring greater trust and efficiency to electronic invoicing in franchise networks, which share ordering and fulfillment data between franchisors and franchisees.
  • Additionally, Arab Jordan Investment Bank, CargoSmart, Certified Origins, HealthSync, ICS Financial Systems, NeuroSoft, Nigeria Customs, OriginTrail, SDK.Finance, and TradeFin have built or integrated production-ready blockchain applications on Oracle Blockchain Platform.

“Oracle’s blockchain solution delivers enterprise performance, security and scalability right out-of-the-box,” said Doug Johnson-Poensgen, CEO and founder of Circulor. “We started with the Oracle Blockchain Platform four months ago and were able to go from zero to a production system spanning multiple organizations involved in ethical sourcing of minerals within a matter of months. Another key advantage is that we were able to integrate Oracle’s blockchain platform into a hybrid blockchain network spanning multiple clouds and easily integrate with our existing systems and applications.”

“Blockchain improves the trust relationship between franchisor and the franchises by including best practices and decentralized access to the transactions.  Normally, merchandise acceptance processes are manual and require an operator entering the data into the system. But, for example when a franchise has economic problems, it can repudiate that delivery, saying that it never received the merchandise. They can manipulate the database and, on the other hand, also the franchisor can manipulate it,” said José María Mínguez Gutiérrez, Transactional Services Manager of SERES. “With blockchain and its immutability and traceability of information, all these problems disappear and all parties can trust the data and the transactions.”

Enhances Security, Developer Productivity and DevOps Capabilities

With this latest release, Oracle has added unique developer-oriented productivity enhancements and consortium-oriented identity management features, which are critical to diverse organizations conducting business transactions via a blockchain network. New DevOps capabilities make the platform easier to integrate with existing business and IT systems. Additionally, as blockchain becomes an important data store in the enterprise, the platform enables Oracle Autonomous Data Warehouse customers to transparently capture blockchain transaction history and current state data for analytics and to integrate it with other data sources. New features include:

  • Enhanced world state database to support standard SQL-based ledger queries reducing the complexity of developing chaincode using readily available programming skills, ensure smart contracts can safely rely on the query results, which are verified at transaction commit, and significantly boost performance of rich data queries.
  • Rich history database shadows transaction history into a relational database schema in the Autonomous Data Warehouse or other Oracle databases, which transparently enables analytics integration for interactive dashboards and reports.
  • Enhanced REST APIs for event subscription, blockchain administration/configuration, and monitoring of network health, transaction rates, and other statistics, which simplify integration with existing enterprise IT tools.
  • Identity federation further extends authentication capabilities to work with external identity providers to facilitate consortium blockchains with many diverse participants using their existing identity management systems.
  • Third-party certificate support for registering client organizations on the blockchain network to enable them to use existing certificates issued by trusted third parties.
  • Hyperledger Fabric 1.3 support, which adds many new features based on the evolving open source version, including chaincode development in Java, further leveraging existing enterprise skills, and support for private transactions among a subset of members, preserving privacy and business confidentiality. This demonstrates Oracle’s commitment to stay current with the Hyperledger community by leveraging new releases and contributing to the open source community.
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State of California Tackles Drought with IoT & Blockchain

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The Freshwater Trust (TFT), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit working to protect and restore freshwater ecosystems, is partnering with IBM Research (NYSE: IBM) and SweetSense Inc., a provider of low-cost satellite connected sensors, to pilot technologies which can accurately monitor and track groundwater use in one of the largest and most at risk aquifers in North America. Additional research support will be provided by the University of Colorado Boulder.

Jointly funded by the Water Foundation and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, the project’s scientists and engineers will demonstrate how the blockchain and remote IoT sensors can accurately measure groundwater usage transparently, and in real-time in California’s Sacramento San Joaquin River Delta.

The sensors will transmit water extraction data to orbiting satellites and then to the IBM Blockchain Platform hosted in the IBM Cloud. The blockchain will record of all data exchanges or transactions made in an append-only, immutable ledger. The blockchain also uses “smart contracts,” whereby transactions are automatically executed when the conditions are matched.

Through a web-based dashboard, water consumers, including farmers; financers and regulators will all be able to monitor and track the use of groundwater to demonstrate how sustainable pumping levels can be achieved through the trading of groundwater use shares in the State of California. Individual users who require groundwater amounts beyond their share cap will be able to “purchase” groundwater shares from users who do not require all of their supply at a market-regulated rate.

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Seoul Metropolitan Government Appoints Members of its ‘Blockchain Governance Team’ Using ICON’s Public Blockchain

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The Seoul Metropolitan Government issued mobile letters of appointment to its Blockchain Governance Team using ICON’s public blockchain. Government and supporting agencies are expected to take the first step in leveraging both public and private blockchain systems.

ICONLOOP developed mobile letters of appointment for the Seoul Blockchain Governance Team. The letter can be issued and viewed through a Governance Team member’s personal cell phone. A Governance Team member can issue a letter of appointment with a name, member identification number and membership terms after accepting the terms and conditions. Letter of appointment issuance records are stored on the ICON public blockchain, making falsification and fake issuance impossible. Authenticity of the record can be verified in the ICON Tracker by searching for a specific transaction.

According to ‘Plans for Blockchain City Seoul’ announced last October, Seoul Metropolitan Government has organized the ‘Seoul Blockchain Governance Team,’ aiming to provide blockchain administration services across several industries.

The Seoul Blockchain Governance Team consists of 100 citizens comprised of college students, developers, corporate representatives, and more. The team plans to participate in a pilot operation of blockchain-based administration services, and provide feedback and recommendations from January 2019 through December 2020. Additionally, they will participate in the development process of Seoul Metropolitan City’s administration services, which include mileage points integration, citizenship card services, online authentication without documents, protection for part-time workers’ rights, and sub-contract payments.

“We expect the increase in public blockchain use-cases led by government, and this appointment letter issuance is a starting point to show a clear example of how blockchain can be used in government” said J.H. Kim, council member of the ICON Foundation and CEO of ICONLOOP. Kim added, “ICONLOOP will focus on improving development capability to provide transparent and efficient blockchain-based administration services, cooperating with Seoul Metropolitan Government.”

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100X Bitcoin Leverage: PrimeXBT Platform Goes LIVE!

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Today signals a turning point in global cryptocurrency markets and the direction that the sites supporting them are taking, as the doors to one of the world’s most sophisticated new trading platforms swing open, and a waitlist of over 150,000 traders from 175 countries around the world are finally able to see what all of the hype has been about.

PrimeXBT won’t be competing with existing crypto-asset exchanges – instead they’re positioned to use technological foresight and connections within the industry to be dominant, both in the retail and institutional sectors of the market. 

This comes in no small part from the powerful combination of advanced functionality and strategy-driven options, such as leverage-trading of up to 100x, the ability for traders to short-sell cryptos and by providing aggregated liquidity from 12 separate providers, concurrently and instantaneously.

By providing this functionality-suite initially for Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple, Litecoin and EOS, opportunities to short-sell Litecoin or to leverage EOS at 1:100 are uniquely available now on PrimeXBT.  With the addition of many more crypto-assets planned, the potential to enact similar trades on an even broader range of assets will be possible over the coming months.

Unsurprisingly, much of what has already been publicized about PrimeXBT in the lead up to today’s launch outlines the creation of a trading toolset more closely in alignment with large traditional asset trading platforms. 

While only a tiny minority of crypto-based exchanges allow traders to leverage trade assets like Bitcoin or Ethereum, and even fewer provide the ability to short-sell during bear conditions, PrimeXBT has embraced the mantra of selecting and combining the widest range of options available for traders to-date.

12

Advanced Features Providing Traders with a Competitive Edge

Incumbent crypto-asset platforms have been slow to realize the market demand for modern features that are suitable for a growing user-base, consisting of ever more sophisticated investors.

Where once simple functionality was enough for a new and developing industry, explosive adoption throughout the past few years and the potential for 2019 to be the biggest growth year yet has seen a maturation of typical trader and the strategies being used.

This, coupled with a move by hedge funds and other institutional traders into crypto-asset markets recently, has created the clear need for next generation trading platforms offering features in-sync with higher-powered trading strategies.

PrimeXBT has taken this challenge in its stride, bucking the trend to produce yet another cookie-cutter exchange, and dramatically superseding what has come before by tailoring a feature-driven interface for modern traders:

  • Fluidly-adjustable leveraging from 1:1 up to an industry-leading 1:100
  • Mechanisms provided for short-selling, not only for BTC pairs, but for ALL assets.
  • Instantly-available volume aggregated from 12 providers simultaneously, ensuring optimal price-acquisition and mitigating against slippage.
  • Lower trading fees than any other major trading platforms, with early-adopters securing fees at ¼ of the cost of trading at Bitfinex.
  • A wide range of specialized order types, including stop-loss, OCO (one-cancels-the-other) and protection orders.
  • The complete removal of any KYC requirements, and anonymous sign-up using an email alone, all within less than 1 minute until accessing trading accounts.
  • Unlike many other platforms, deposits can be made in fiat and cryptocurrencies via Changelly’s integration with PrimeXBT systems.
  • Easy-to-use and easy-to-customize professional user interface, providing multi-screen support, advanced charting software and a comprehensive walkthrough tutorial.
  • Robust financial-industry-grade security protocols, utilizing cold-wallet storage, address whitelisting, cryptographic password hashing and 2-factor authentication as standard on all accounts.

Any one of these features provides greater power to develop profitable strategies – when combined together, they provide the unprecedented ability to access crypto-asset markets with a versatile and comprehensive toolset.

The value of the addition of a broad range of functionality isn’t in the functionality itself, but in the new and untapped opportunities that are provided for traders and investors.

A Unique Feature-Set Facilitating Unique Opportunities

Professional traders understand that opportunity predominantly falls within outlier situations, away from the pack, and by discovering and developing an edge over competitors using any resources available.

What are some of the edge-case opportunities open to the 130,000-strong army marching into PrimeXBT today?

Ability to Short and Leverage ALL of the 6 largest-marketcap cryptocurrencies

No other platform in the world provides the distinct opportunity to generate returns on the top 6 cryptocurrencies, irrespective of market conditions. While shorting is commonplace in traditional markets, PrimeXBT provides the cryptocurrency industry’s widest selection of high-liquidity shortable pairs. 

When combined with the ability to leverage trades at a rate of up to 100 times the initial deposit amount, opportunities that would not be possible otherwise and that have the potential to yield incomparable ROI’s, are available exclusively at PrimeXBT.


Lower fees exposure opportunities in High-Frequency Trading (HFT)

Advanced strategies such as arbitrage and market-making use the cost of platform fees as a determining factor to profitability, and the potential to execute on a particular trader. 

By providing a fee structure lower than other major platforms, PrimeXBT allows traders to customize HFT strategies to include trades that would typically be unprofitable at higher-fee exchanges.

Simultaneously-Opposing Trades Allows for Advanced Risk Management

PrimeXBT provides the unique ability to hold opposing positions concurrently on any given trading pair.  Instead of being forced to enter naked positions with full risk if the trend moves against them, traders are now able to develop strategies that incorporate hedging by placing weighted trades in the counteracting direction.

While features such as leveraging are undoubtedly powerful, the true power lies in developing leveraged positions with calculated risk management utilizing hedging for safety.  This functionality reflects PrimeXBT’s goal to provide professional trading tools to beginners and experts equally.


Instant Access to PrimeXBT – the Time for Waitlists is Over

After months of anticipation, registrations and preparation.. PrimeXBT is now LIVE!

Tens of thousands of new users are logging into their new accounts following the lead up to today’s launch event.  But to get your first look at the platform’s features and user interface, there’s no need to join the back of a waitlist.

Be one of the first to experience the power of PrimeXBT at https://PrimeXBT.com, and for your chance to earn from the wave of new users signing up in the coming months, be a part of the highest-paying crypto platform referral program at https://PrimeXB.com/referral/.

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Cryptocurrency Platform Chimpion Announces Support for Binance

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Chimpion announced that its platform will support Binance Coin (BNB) as a payment currency and that it will be launching BNB Avenue, a BNB-exclusive online marketplace.

BNB Avenue will be built on the Chimpion e-commerce platform and will give consumers around the world access to products from top online marketplaces, similarly to BCD Bazaar, which was launched by Chimpion sponsors Shopping Cart Elite and the Bitcoin Diamond Foundation. Like BCD Bazaar, BNB Avenue not only gives merchants a chance to easily adopt cryptocurrency, it also empowers customers from all over the world to purchase or request a variety of products that may have not been available via fiat currency.

While most popular marketplaces operate in fiat currency, BNB Avenue exclusively supports Binance Coin (BNB), making it easy for shoppers all over the world to purchase coveted products. All Chimpion stores will now have the option to accept BNB payments, giving BNB holders even more options when they buy and sell online.

Binance was launched in 2017 by Changpeng “CZ” Zhao and experienced extremely rapid growth within its first six months. As of January 2018, Binance is the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange with nearly $1.5 billion daily trade volume. After the successful launch of the Binance exchange, the company launched its token coin, Binance Coin (BNB), which has since reached a market capitalization of $1.3 billion.

With Binance Coin’s high profile in the crypto market and Chimpion’s robust e-commerce platform, BNB Avenue presents BNB holders with a practical way to use the currency.

About Chimpion

Chimpion is a cryptocurrency e-commerce platform that enables any merchant to begin accepting cryptocurrency payments online. By holding Chimpion’s Banana Token (BNANA), merchants can gain access to Chimpion’s robust crypto e-commerce platform for free, without needing to pay a monthly subscription fee. Chimpion was developed using technology from Shopping Cart Elite, Paytomat and Bitcoin Diamond (BCD) and combines comprehensive e-commerce features with convenient payment processing.

Chimpion’s primary goal is to drive the adoption of cryptocurrency as a payment solution by operating a rich e-commerce platform centered around digital assets. New startups and established merchants alike can become part of Chimpion’s vast network to take advantage of its fast and affordable transactions and user-friendly infrastructure.

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Blockchain Evolves from Buzzword to Major Benefit for Payments, TD Bank Survey Finds

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Treasury and finance professionals anticipate more operational challenges in 2019 than in previous years, according to a recent survey conducted by TD Bank, America’s Most Convenient Bank®, at the 2018 Association for Financial Professionals Annual Conference in Chicago, Illinois. The risk of payments fraud/cybersecurity topped professionals’ list of concerns, with 44 percent naming it their top operational challenge, a 14 percent year-over-year increase.

The ability to adapt to or process faster/electronic payments is an obstacle for 37 percent of survey respondents, also rising 14 percent year-over-year. This concern is likely to cause some anxiety for finance professionals, as commercial payments continue evolving. In fact, the majority (60 percent) of respondents expect to see the largest amount of growth this year within faster or real-time processing, an 8 percent increase from last year.

Despite Industry Uncertainties, Blockchain has Benefits 
Unsurprisingly, technology continues to influence treasury operations, and the majority of survey respondents (90 percent) feel that blockchain/distributed ledger technology will have some type of positive effect on the payments industry.

The top impact of blockchain/distributed ledger technology is its ability to create stronger audit trails (29 percent), respondents said. Additional positive outcomes include:

  • Speeding up the payments process (22 percent)
  • Improving efficiency of cross-border payments (21 percent)
  • Reducing payments fraud (18 percent)

“Blockchain technology has broad implications for the commercial payments space, from speeding up settlements to securing cross-border transactions,” said Rick Burke, Head of Corporate Products and Services at TD Bank. “Even though much of the industry has a baseline understanding that blockchain can evolve and improve payments, the varied responses indicate that the technology’s specific capabilities and implications are still a great unknown for many finance professionals.”

Despite the hype around new innovations like blockchain, finance professionals appear to be split on the use of another technology type to facilitate payments: open APIs. Fifty percent of respondents claim that their organization currently uses or is in the process of integrating open APIs into company operations, while 49 percent do not use open APIs and nearly a quarter of that group does not have plans to do so in the future.

With so much change on the horizon, companies are investing in training strategies for several facets of treasury operations. Survey respondents said their organization has training strategies specifically for data and analytics (45 percent), AI and automation (26 percent) and blockchain (14 percent).

Fraud Casts a Larger Cloud 
As the risk of payments fraud/cybersecurity threats is top of mind across the industry, there comes an expectation from 98 percent of respondents that financial institutions should assist organizations with protecting against fraud and cybercrime. More than half (55 percent) said financial institutions can help them better protect against fraud and cybercrime through education – although 48 percent of respondents admitted that their company does not have any in-house cyber fraud prevention training. Additionally, one-in-four finance professionals surveyed feel that banks should offer greater controls on transactions and 18 percent state they want risk or process reviews.

“As global fraud and cybersecurity incidents continue to rise, corporations recognize the need to bolster their protective measures and improve employee understanding of how to safeguard finances,” said Burke. “To achieve real success, organizations and their employees need to be better able to identify and deter fraud attempts. This should be a responsibility shared by businesses and their financial institutions, beginning with better education.”

Survey Methodology
TD Bank polled finance professionals at the 2018 AFP Conference held Nov. 5-6, 2018, in Chicago, Illinois. A total of 406 responses were collected from industry professionals, including business end-users and financial and technology services organizations.

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FCA warns public of investment scams as over £197 million reported losses in 2018

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The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is today warning investors to be vigilant to the threat posed by investment scammers, as data from Action Fraud reveals over £197 million1 of reported losses in 2018. Victims were scammed out of over £29,000 on average last year, as fraudsters employed increasingly sophisticated tactics to persuade victims to invest.

According to data from the FCA call centre, the most commonly reported scams involved investments in shares and bonds, forex and cryptocurrencies by firms that are not authorised by the FCA. Together they accounted for 85%2 of all suspected investment scams reported in 2018. People are warned to be particularly vigilant during the first quarter of the year, the peak investment season, as many look to invest before the tax year end.

Interestingly, the profile of investment scams is changing as more and more people are being targeted online, moving away from the traditional cold call. Fraudsters are now contacting people through emails, professional looking websites and social media channels, such as Facebook and Instagram. Last year 54% of those who did the right thing by checking the FCA Warning List had been contacted by potential fraudsters via online sources, up from 45% in 2017. The FCA Warning List is a tool that helps users to find out more about the risks associated with an investment, and search a list of firms the FCA knows are operating without its authorisation.

Though the contact methods used by fraudsters may vary, their tactics remain the same. We are working with financial expert and experienced investor Alvin Hall to educate the public on the most common tactics used by investment scammers. The FCA is urging people to be vigilant when making investment decisions, and to look out for these six warning signs.

  1. Unexpected contact ​​​​– Traditionally scammers cold-call but contact can also come from online sources e.g. email or social media, post, word of mouth or even in person at a seminar or exhibition.
  2. Time pressure – They might offer you a bonus or discount if you invest before a set date or say the opportunity is only available for a short period.
  3. Social proof – They may share fake reviews and claim other clients have invested or want in on the deal.
  4. Unrealistic returns – Fraudsters often promise tempting returns that sound too good to be true, such as much better interest rates than elsewhere.
  5. False authority – Using convincing literature and websites, claiming to be regulated, speaking with authority on investment products.
  6. Flattery – Building a friendship with you to lull you into a false sense of security.

Alvin Hall, personal finance expert, who is supporting the campaign, said:

‘The amount lost last year to investment fraud is staggering, over £197 million according to Action Fraud.’

‘If my 30 years of experience in investment markets has taught me anything, it’s this – regardless of how confident you are about what you’re investing in, you should also be just as confident you know who you’re investing with. The FCA Warning List is a fantastic resource for smart investors to use to protect themselves from scams.’

‘Spotting an investment scam is increasingly challenging. To prove that point, my experience was put to the test when I was pitched three investment opportunities. Watch the video to see how I got on.’

Mark Steward, Executive Director of Enforcement and Market Oversight, FCA, said:

‘The first quarter of the year is a common time for people to make their financial plans for the year, including investments. But before you invest do your homework. Always check the FCA’s register to make sure you’re dealing with an authorised firm and use the contact details on our register, not the details the firm gives you, to avoid ‘clones’. Also check the FCA Warning List of firms to avoid. Remember, if in any doubt – don’t invest!’

‘Investment scams are becoming more and more sophisticated and fraudsters are using fake credentials to make themselves look legitimate. The FCA is working harder than ever to help protect the public against this threat. Last year we published over 360 warnings about potentially fraudulent firms. And we want to spread the message so we can all better protect ourselves from investment scams.’

Director of Action Fraud, Pauline Smith, said:

‘These statistics show that investment fraud is a major threat, with fraudsters doing everything they can to manipulate potential victims into making investments. Victims are often coerced or persuaded into parting with significant amounts of money and this can have a devastating impact on their wellbeing and finances.’

‘We are working with the FCA to raise awareness of investment fraud and would urge anyone who is considering in investing to check with the FCA before parting with their money.’

‘If you think you have been a victim of investment fraud, report it to Action Fraud.’

To reduce the chance of falling victim to investment fraud, the FCA advises consumers to, at the very least:

  1. Reject unsolicited investment offers whether made online, on social media or over the phone.
  2. Before investing, check the FCA Register to see if the firm or individual you are dealing with is authorised and check the FCA Warning List of firms to avoid.
  3. Get impartial advice before investing.

The FCA’s ScamSmart campaign encourages those considering investing to check its dedicated website (www.fca.org.uk/scamsmart) for tips on how to avoid investment fraud. If you’ve lost money in a scam, contact Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or www.actionfraud.police.uk(link is external).

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