Blockchain’s Perfect Storm: Removing Money Laundering from the Financial System

Blockchain’s Perfect Storm: Removing Money Laundering from the Financial System

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Today, banks and financial markets refuse to share information that can prevent money launderers and fraudsters from operating in the shadows, in the gaps between market participants. But now the situation is changing. As Grant Blaisdell, co-founder and COO of Coinfirm.io says: “Blockchain has the potential to completely eliminate fraud, money laundering and criminal activity from our financial and banking systems.” This is the first in a three-part report that looks at Anti-money laundering (AML) and the efforts of the Blockchain community to bring everyone together to rid the financial markets of fraudsters, criminals and those who seek to use the financial system for the bad ends. Compliance costs skyrocket Remembering back to 2012, HSBC had to pay the U.S. authorities $1.9 bln in fines for not identifying and distinguishing bad actors from good, through the handling of a huge volume of questionable transactions from unreliable sources. The question remains: did they really know or were the systems that are meant to flag the risks inadequate? How did HSBC get this so wrong over a long period across many sovereign jurisdictions? Does this continue to highlight the fundamental issue for banks and all financial institutions the challenge to accurately identify each party …

Stellar Launches SWIFT-like Blockchain-Backed Money Transfer Network

Stellar Launches SWIFT-like Blockchain-Backed Money Transfer Network

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Stellar is launching one of the first Blockchain applications which may hold the potential to affect a large number of people outside the digital currency space, through its global money transfernetwork aimed at some of the world’s largest remittance markets. It has been described by CTO Jed McCaleb as an open-source SWIFT-like network that allows connected organizations to transact with one another thus helping to reduce the friction that contributes to higher fees. The platform also connects diverse financial systems with one technical integration. He says to Cointelegraph: “Given the diverse nature of global financial services today, this interoperability can substantially lower global remittance costs by making transactions that cross national boundaries, currencies and financial institutions much more efficient. Transactions processed on the Stellar network take only 3-5 seconds to complete, and are extremely low-cost, regardless of the size of the payment amount, attributes that make the platform uniquely suitable for international remittances.” Cross-border payments Stellar has partnered four key institutions to enable low-cost global money transfers to India, the Philippines and Europe as well as cross-border M-PESA payments to and from Kenya, Ghana and Nigeria. These new partnerships are particularly meaningful to the company because it is one of …

Blockchain Proven to be Faster Than Wire Transfers in Banking Payment Test

Blockchain Proven to be Faster Than Wire Transfers in Banking Payment Test

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Bitcoin and its revolutionary Blockchain technology have many advantages over the status quo. This ranges from better security, lower costs and superior inclusion. Another advantage is the speed of transactions, as the legacy banking system has been using the wire transfer method for generations. Now, results from a test run by a group of banking interests in Japan have revealed that Bitcoin’s Blockchain technology is more than ready to drag the current monetary transfer system into the 21st century. According to the Asian Nikkei Review, the unnamed “megabanks,” the Deloitte Tohmatsu accounting group and the Bitcoin exchange bitFlyer have been running Blockchain tests for a considerable part of 2016, with the final tests concluding in September. The goal was to see if Bitcoin’s Blockchain technology could hold up to the rigors and speed requirements of the current currency transfer systems. You could say that these tests were successful. “Blockchain’s low processing speed was seen as a major drawback of the technology,” said the Asian Nikkei Times. “But researchers were able to conduct 1,500 transactions per second using Blockchain, on par with the nearly 1,400 transactions the current interbank wire system is capable of handling at peak times.” The banks again were …

“Make Something People Want”: How Blockchain Has Become a Fetish

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Desire for an entity that is believed to convey supernatural powers, eliciting a condition of intense excitement. We call this fetishism. An old idea is that our consumer society is afflicted by a fetish for commodities, coveting the trappings of a phantasmagoric existence. More recently the idea of “Blockchain” has emerged as an object of contemporary fetish. We’ve heard that it’s bigger than the Internet itself! It’s, almost, bigger than The Beatles! Given this state of affairs one might start to wonder – from whence did this adulation of Blockchain arise? The situation is analogous to the great technological fetish concept of “artificial intelligence” and the never ending stream of dubious research and claims it provokes, in stark contrast to the more somber and practical field of machine learning, which is more firmly rooted in the realm of the empirically possible. As the idea of Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies becomes more normalized, they cease to function as a tabula rasa upon which we can project our wildest fantasies and increasingly we turn to the idea of Blockchain to satisfy this need. In order for a technology to catch hold of the collective unconscious (kollektives Unbewusstes) in the fantastic way that the …

Richard Branson: Blockchain Is an ‘Economic Revolution

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Virgin Group founder and billionaire entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson is a huge supporter of blockchain technology. While talking to the press on October 3, Branson said the tech could bring an “economic revolution” to many nations worldwide. Sir Richard Branson Praises Blockchain Land Registry Bitcoin and blockchain technology is a keen interest for Sir Richard Branson. This week, Branson chatted with the media concerning blockchain technology’s many potentials. To make his point, Branson referred to the recent partnership between Bitfury and Hernando de Soto, who are trialing a land titling distributed ledger platform. Bitfury and the Peruvian economist aim to work with the Republic of Georgia’s National Agency of Public Registry. The project aims to deploy blockchain technology to create a better land titling system, with transparent and immutable attributes. In developing countries, land titles are often manipulated, forged, and taken from their rightful owners. At the Virgin Disruptors event this week in London, Branson told attendees: If you take somewhere like Egypt, 90 percent of people have got houses, they’ve got a garden, but they’ve got no piece of paper to show ownership of that — And without ownership of your property, it’s almost impossible to start a business or get a bank loan …