article-aa

Canada’s largest bank has filed a patent application for a method of predicting when customers are about to make large purchases. It’s also looking to patent a text-analytics tool tasked with helping investment advisers identify themes early, such as the rise of cryptocurrencies. (Financial Post)

Read this article for free

By entering your e-mail you consent to receiving commercial electronic messages from The Logic Inc. containing news, updates, offers or promotions about The Logic Inc.’s products and services. You can withdraw your consent at anytime. Please refer to our privacy policy or contact us for more details.

Already a subscriber?

Talking point: RBC is facing pressure on two fronts. Fintechs, which have already peeled customers away with free or low-fee products, are now launching their own banking arms. Simultaneously, the world’s largest tech companies are encroaching on RBC’s turf. As the bank’s CEO, Dave McKay, put it last year, the FAANGs are earning “economic rent” by collecting information on RBC’s customers via search and advertising data, then selling it back to the bank. These patents are designed to emulate that process. Once RBC knows a customer is looking to make a large purchase, the bank could sell ads to them regarding that item, according to one of the patents. RBC is in the midst of a broad tech push. In November 2019, The Logic reported the bank was looking into a cryptocurrency platform for investments and online purchases, as well as blockchain-based smart contracts and investment vehicles.

article-aa

In a confidential report, the world body warns that attending the country’s second annual Pyongyang Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Conference in February would be a likely sanctions violation. (Reuters)

Read this article for free

By entering your e-mail you consent to receiving commercial electronic messages from The Logic Inc. containing news, updates, offers or promotions about The Logic Inc.’s products and services. You can withdraw your consent at anytime. Please refer to our privacy policy or contact us for more details.

Already a subscriber?

Talking point: For 3,400 euros, organizers of the conference promise Bitcoin connoisseurs a week of discreet friendship, collaboration, access to government officials and “winter sports and relaxing time.” Yet the United Nations said the North Korean government, which has been under sanctions from the world body since 2006, has stolen billions from banks and cryptocurrency exchanges to fund its weapons of mass disruption program. It further accused the despotic regime of using cryptocurrency “for sanctions evasion and money laundering.” In November 2019, U.S. authorities arrested Virgil Griffith after the Alabaman spoke at last year’s conference.

article-aa

Last April, U.S. authorities told their Canadian counterparts that Samy Bensaci was relieving Canadians and Americans alike of their virtual currencies. Now confined to his parents’ house in the city’s northeast, Bensaci faces various fraud-related charges in an Ontario court. (La Presse)

Read this article for free

By entering your e-mail you consent to receiving commercial electronic messages from The Logic Inc. containing news, updates, offers or promotions about The Logic Inc.’s products and services. You can withdraw your consent at anytime. Please refer to our privacy policy or contact us for more details.

Already a subscriber?

Talking point: Bensaci allegedly engaged in “SIM swapping,” a decidedly low-tech method of hijacking cryptocurrency accounts. Authorities say ring members acquired the phone numbers of the victims—many of whom were attendees of New York’s Consensus cryptocurrency convention—then impersonated the victims in reporting a stolen phone. Using a new SIM card, they would go about emptying their virtual bank accounts. Among the alleged victims: Toronto businessman Don Tapscott, co-founder and executive chairman of the Blockchain Research Institute.

article-aa

The Shenzhen-based tech firm is looking for a person to lead a cryptocurrency research unit tasked with integrating a digital coin into its payments platform and ensuring regulatory compliance. (CoinDesk, TechNode)

Read this article for free

By entering your e-mail you consent to receiving commercial electronic messages from The Logic Inc. containing news, updates, offers or promotions about The Logic Inc.’s products and services. You can withdraw your consent at anytime. Please refer to our privacy policy or contact us for more details.

Already a subscriber?

Talking point: The People’s Bank of China is considering letting Tencent be an issuer of the bank’s digital yuan, which is set to be rolled out in 2020. The firm is increasingly working with China on fintech initiatives: earlier this month, its bank, WeBank, became the first technical infrastructure provider for China’s blockchain network. Government work aside, the market potential for Tencent is significant. Over 900 million people used its WeChat Pay service in 2017, and the firm has an approximate 40 per cent share of China’s mobile payments industry. Today’s news is a further challenge to Facebook’s Libra, about which both the Chinese government and Tencent have raised concerns. Tencent’s ambitions are not without their critics. In May, Nepal banned WeChat Pay for not registering with domestic authorities.

article-aa

Residents would get a single set of credentials with which to log into government services, and an app with identity documents like medicare cards, driver’s licences and birth certificates. The province is also considering using biometric verification such as fingerprints, matching voice recordings to speech and facial recognition technology. (CBC Radio-Canada)

Read this article for free

By entering your e-mail you consent to receiving commercial electronic messages from The Logic Inc. containing news, updates, offers or promotions about The Logic Inc.’s products and services. You can withdraw your consent at anytime. Please refer to our privacy policy or contact us for more details.

Already a subscriber?

Talking point: Government Digital Transformation Minister Éric Caire said the new system could reduce fraud, citing the data breaches at financial institutions like Capital One and Desjardins, which revealed Tuesday hackers had access to the information of 1.8 million more customers than previously reported. But large databases of personal information make appealing hacking targets, and collecting biometrics increases that risk, as breaches of India’s national identification system show. Digital identity experiments are underway across Canada. Two federal departments are looking to test blockchain-based credentials that could replace paper documents, while Service Canada accepts logins using its Alberta counterpart’s system under a pilot project.

article-aa

The coin’s price dropped to as low as US$6,929, down almost nine per cent from its midnight price of US$7,599. Also on Friday, the People’s Bank of China said it will target cryptocurrency trading in Shanghai after seeing a resurgence in initial coin offerings and other means of raising money from distributing tokens. (Reuters)

Read this article for free

By entering your e-mail you consent to receiving commercial electronic messages from The Logic Inc. containing news, updates, offers or promotions about The Logic Inc.’s products and services. You can withdraw your consent at anytime. Please refer to our privacy policy or contact us for more details.

Already a subscriber?

Talking point: Chinese regulators are trying to draw a distinction between blockchain—an area in which President Xi Jinping said last month the country should try to “gain an edge”—and cryptocurrencies. The government has also intervened to dampen enthusiasm caused in part by its own messaging. A state-run news outlet appealed for investors to “stay rational” after a surge in the stocks of blockchain companies on Chinese indexes following Xi’s comments. And Friday’s announcement comes after an article by the state-run Xinhua News Agency described Bitcoin as blockchain’s “first successful application,” although it included warnings about the cryptocurrency’s volatility and illegal use.

article-aa

The group that holds the commercial rights to the World Chess Championship will file an IPO on London’s Alternative Investment Market in 2020. It aims to raise funds by issuing security tokens—a digital representation of equity—using blockchain technology; each will be worth hundreds of dollars. (Financial Times)

Read this article for free

By entering your e-mail you consent to receiving commercial electronic messages from The Logic Inc. containing news, updates, offers or promotions about The Logic Inc.’s products and services. You can withdraw your consent at anytime. Please refer to our privacy policy or contact us for more details.

Already a subscriber?

Talking point: The game has struggled with its finances in a digital age, and it the highest levels it’s almost entirely dependent on rich backers. According to Crunchbase, World Chess raised US$6 million in its latest funding round in May from venture firm Prytek and one of its supporters Igor Rybakov, a Russian billionaire. The pre- IPO, which launches next week, will see World Chess sell around four to six per cent of the company to investors in the U.S. and EU. While the U.K.’s Financial Conduct Authority has said the token offerings are “very high-risk, speculative investments” with no guarantee of return and potential for fraud, World Chess hopes the money raised will help transform chess into an e-sport, complete with an online championship platform and anti-cheating software.