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Archive for the ‘finance’ category: Page 3

Sep 24, 2020

Ripjar, founded by GCHQ alums, raises $36.8M for AI that detects financial crime

Posted by in categories: business, cybercrime/malcode, finance, government, privacy, robotics/AI

Financial crime as a wider category of cybercrime continues to be one of the most potent of online threats, covering nefarious activities as diverse as fraud, money laundering and funding terrorism. Today, one of the startups that has been building data intelligence solutions to help combat that is announcing a fundraise to continue fueling its growth.

Ripjar, a U.K. company founded by five data scientists who previously worked together in British intelligence at the Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ, the U.K.’s equivalent of the NSA), has raised $36.8 million (£28 million) in a Series B, money that it plans to use to continue expanding the scope of its AI platform — which it calls Labyrinth — and scaling the business.

Labyrinth, as Ripjar describes it, works with both structured and unstructured data, using natural language processing and an API-based platform that lets organizations incorporate any data source they would like to analyse and monitor for activity. It automatically and in real time checks these against other data sources like sanctions lists, politically exposed persons (PEPs) lists and transaction alerts.

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Sep 22, 2020

U.S. Federal Regulators Allow National Banks To Back Digital Dollar Stablecoins

Posted by in category: finance

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) has issued its second letter this afternoon allowing U.S. financial institutions to back digital dollar stablecoins under the leadership of Acting Comptroller Brian Brooks. This letter permits U.S. financial institutions to hold deposits as reserves for stablecoins that represent fiat currency such as the U.S. dollar.

The OCC regulates large national banks such as Wells Fargo WFC and J.P. Morgan Chase, so the guidance from this agency only applies to ‘National Associations’ and ‘Federal Savings Banks’. In coordination with the OCC, a statement from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the agency that has for the most part dominated this area of regulation in the U.S., supported the actions as well.

Sep 21, 2020

World War III will be fought over water

Posted by in categories: existential risks, finance, food, law, terrorism

RS: The third world war is at our gate, and it will be about water, if we don’t do something about this crisis. These walks are to raise awareness—this year we covered 17 countries, and in nine of them there were displaced people. So many people in the Middle East and African countries are moving to places like Europe, in part because of water scarcity—after forced migration comes, tension, conflict, and terrorism. Where terrorism is active, there is usually a scarcity of water. Look at Syria—a long time ago, it had very good agriculture, but then Turkey built a dam that changed things. It’s a similar story with Libya. If we want a safe future, we need to start conserving water.

What role can regulation play in conservation? Do you think privatizing water is a good way to promote its efficient use?

RS: If we really think about legal changes, we have to first think about river rights, or the rights of nature, and only then about water rights for humans. This type of thinking doesn’t exist today but we need this kind of legal framework that assures that the land of the river is only for the river, that the flow of the river is kept clean, and that the river has greenery on both banks to prevent erosion and silting. Only with all these factors can we ensure that rivers are healthy and only then that we are healthy.

Sep 16, 2020

Brigadier General Dr. Loree Sutton New York’s Next Mayor?

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, finance, health, military, neuroscience

In recent years we have seen the move away from ‘politics as usual’. Non-traditional figures have entered the political arena to disrupt the typical entrenched narratives. The election and worldwide popularity of Jacinda Ardern, New Zealand Prime Minister just one example of a new kind of leader who prioritises national wellbeing and happiness in the belief that everything else will follow.

Brigadier General (Retired) Dr. Loree Sutton Next Mayor of New York City?

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Sep 11, 2020

Blockchain platform commercializes digital bank guarantees in Australia

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, business, finance

The Lygon blockchain platform, which runs on IBM Public Cloud, has reportedly successfully conducted its pilot since last year with Australian banks ANZ, Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) and Westpac and a group of 20 Australian businesses.

Banks are expected to issue bank guarantees in just one day once they implement Lygon compared to the current paper-based guarantees that can take a month. The three Australian banks and retailers Scentre Group and IBM are planning to expand the Lygon platform for commercial use, according to a report on Sept 1.

A bank guarantee is a type of financial backstop offered by a lending institution. The bank guarantee means that the lender will ensure that the liabilities of a debtor will be met. The financial guarantees are said to be needed as part of retail property leases and from this month. Lygon chairman Nigel Dobson added that:

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Sep 10, 2020

39% of The World’s Rich Would Take a Space Flight – But Then What?

Posted by in categories: finance, space travel

The modern space race is getting closer to making astronauts out of tourists – and a new survey finds that there is already pent-up demand, even as questions linger over the industry.

About 39 per cent of people with a net worth of more than $5 million (Dh18.3m), a total addressable market of about 2.4m, are interested in paying at least $250,000 (the current price) for a Virgin Galactic flight to the edge of space, according to financial services firm Cowen.

These findings come as Virgin Galactic takes another step towards offering commercial space flights, which will one day provide paying customers about six minutes of weightlessness as the spacecraft hurtles through Earth’s atmosphere.

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Sep 4, 2020

Blockchain and Money

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, economics, finance, policy

This course is for students wishing to explore blockchain technology’s potential use—by entrepreneurs and incumbents—to change the world of money and finance. The course begins with a review of Bitcoin and an understanding of the commercial, technical, and public policy fundamentals of blockchain technology, distributed ledgers, and smart contracts. The class then continues on to current and potential blockchain applications in the financial sector.

Sep 4, 2020

Insanely humanlike androids have entered the workplace and soon may take your job

Posted by in categories: business, employment, finance, robotics/AI, transportation

November 2019 is a landmark month in the history of the future. That’s when humanoid robots that are indistinguishable from people start running amok in Los Angeles. Well, at least they do in the seminal sci-fi film “Blade Runner.” Thirty-seven years after its release, we don’t have murderous androids running around. But we do have androids like Hanson Robotics’ Sophia, and they could soon start working in jobs traditionally performed by people.

Russian start-up Promobot recently unveiled what it calls the world’s first autonomous android. It closely resembles a real person and can serve in a business capacity. Robo-C can be made to look like anyone, so it’s like an android clone. It comes with an artificial intelligence system that has more than 100,000 speech modules, according to the company. It can operate at home, acting as a companion robot and reading out the news or managing smart appliances — basically, an anthropomorphic smart speaker. It can also perform workplace tasks such as answering customer questions in places like offices, airports, banks and museums, while accepting payments and performing other functions.

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Sep 4, 2020

The psychology of phishing: why do we fall for terrible email scams?

Posted by in categories: cybercrime/malcode, finance

This is an article from 2014, but it’s interesting — especially for why phishing emails are so lame. Money quote:

‘The answer is that the implausibility is a useful tool for the scammers. An entirely believable email would get millions of people falling for the bait – most of whom would catch on later when the scammers started requesting private banking details. This way, the fraudsters can avoid wasting their time on no-hopers, knowing that any replies they do receive are … See More.


Maybe your bank wants you to update your password; maybe a new Facebook friend wants to show you a funny web page. Maybe a Nigerian lawyer wants to pass on a legacy from a long-lost relative.

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Sep 2, 2020

After coronavirus, AI could be central to our new normal

Posted by in categories: finance, health, robotics/AI

When we came out of the financial crisis of 2008, cloud computing kicked into high gear and started to become a pervasive, transformational technology. The current COVID-19 crisis could provide a similar inflection point for AI applications. While the implications of AI continue to be debated on the world stage, the rapid onset of a global health crisis and concomitant recession will accelerate its impact.

Times of crisis bring rapid change. Efforts to harness AI technologies to discover new drugs – either vaccine or treatment – have kicked into hyperdrive. Startups are racing to find solutions and established companies are forming partnerships with academia to find a cure. Other companies are researching existing drugs for their potential applicability. AI is proving a useful tool for dramatically reducing the time needed to identify potential drug candidates, possibly saving years of research. AI uses already put into action are screening for COVID-19 symptoms, decision support for CT scans, and automating hospital operations. A variety of healthcare functions have started to be performed by robots, from diagnosis to temperature monitoring.

Whatever the new normal becomes in the aftermath of the current crisis, it’s apparent that AI will be an even larger part of the technology landscape going forward — and not only for healthcare.

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