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IDnow joins consortium aimed at making crypto assets compliant with new EU regulations

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System to achieve full compliance of Crypto Asset Service Providers and self-hosted wallets with AML regulations and the Transfer of Funds Regulation    

MUNICH, Feb. 13, 2024 /PRNewswire/ —  IDnow, a leading identity verification platform provider in Europe, joins a consortium of five partners including the IOTA Foundation, walt.id, SPYCE.5, and Bloom Labs with the goal of making Crypto Asset Service Providers (CASPs) and self-hosted wallets compliant with the European Anti-Money-Laundering Regulation and the Transfer of Funds Regulation (TFR). 

 

 

The new TFR regulation in the EU mandates that all cryptocurrency transactions will need to carry identifying data of the sender and the receiver. According to the new rule, compliance with TFR is mandatory for all CASPs. Additionally, the new AML Regulation will require all CASPs to comply with similar AML rules as other financial institutions. For example, when a user opens an account and registers a wallet with a CASP, an identification process is required to comply with the new AML Regulation and TFR.

One challenge for CASPs to adhere to the new rules lies in GDPR compliance, as personal identifiable information (PII) should not be stored on blockchains or Distributed Ledger Technologies (DLT). However, to comply with the new regulations, CASPs need to know with whom they are doing business and continuously verify this information.

Raising trust and transparency in crypto asset transactions

To address this challenge, the partners have formed a consortium to propose a system where a trusted party tokenizes an identification process it has witnessed, allowing CASPs to have confidence in this process, without revealing any PII. The resulting soul-bound token (SBT) can be used for blockchain processes, enabling web3 native interactions. Furthermore, the trusted party can reveal the identity information, if requested by an authorized party, such as law enforcement, as well as revoke the SBT, if needed.

Within the consortium, the IOTA Foundation, a non-profit foundation supporting the development of the IOTA protocol, will provide the underlying network as the proposed solution will be implemented on an Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM)-compatible IOTA Smart Contract Chain. walt.id, a leading open source vendor of decentralized identity and wallet infrastructure, will develop, provide, and maintain the trusted witness service for creating and verifying SBTs like identity proofs, while IDnow will deliver the identity verification solution to onboard users into the wallet solution. Bloom, an all-in-one wallet for the IOTA, Shimmer and EVM ecosystem, will provide the capabilities for users to store, present and prove ownership of the SBT. SPYCE.5, specializing in the integration of hybrid blockchain technologies, will provide the essential infrastructure for seamless interchain communication and transaction validation, ensuring the system’s overall efficiency and regulatory compliance.

Statements

“We are excited to be part of this forward-thinking consortium alongside highly esteemed crypto asset industry players to address a pressing need for crypto wallet solutions that comply with the latest EU regulations. Crypto companies are facing a race against the clock to implement new requirements, which is why we wish to submit this proposed solution to the EU for consideration to address the technological and regulatory challenges around AML, KYC and TFR in crypto,” says Rayissa Armata, Director Global Regulatory and Government Affairs at IDnow.

“We are thrilled to be working with such incredible partners to create a truly seamless user experience and to provide the underlying distributed ledger technology. Identity verification in Web3 environments should be simple and straightforward, without sacrificing privacy or security. As regulatory requirements grow, we need innovative solutions that are easy to use for both businesses and everyday users,” says Dominik Schiener, Chairman of the Board of the IOTA Foundation.

“We have been building decentralized identity and wallet solutions for many clients across various industries, but this project is particularly interesting as it shows new ways of onboarding and verifying users for crypto and DeFi use cases that have traditionally been struggling with regulatory compliance,” says Dominik Beron, Founder of walt.id.

“Bloom is excited to be collaborating with the partners in this consortium. This project will ensure our users and the crypto ecosystem can benefit from a self-hosted wallet that complies with EU regulations,” says Nicole O’Brien, Co-founder of Bloom Labs.

“We’re proud to be part of this groundbreaking consortium, leveraging SPYCE.5’s hybrid chain architecture to navigate the complex landscape of EU regulations. Our innovative approach ensures not only compliance but also maintains the integrity and efficiency vital in the crypto space,” says Holger Köther, Managing Director of SPYCE.5.

About IDnow
IDnow is a leading identity verification platform provider in Europe with a vision to make the connected world a safer place. The IDnow platform provides a broad portfolio of identity verification solutions, ranging from automated to human-assisted from purely online to point-of-sale, each of them optimized for user conversion rates and security.

In 2021, IDnow acquired the French market leader for identity technology, ARIADNEXT, and the German identity Trust Management AG, enabling IDnow to offer its customers one of the broadest identification solutions through a single, integrated platform.

The company has offices in Germany, United Kingdom, and France and is backed by renowned institutional investors, including Corsair Capital and Seventure Partners. Its portfolio of over 900 international clients spans a wide range of industries, and includes leading international players, such as UniCredit, Telefonica, Sixt, Crédit Agricole, BNP, and Munich Re, as well as digital champions like N26, Solarisbank, Younited Credit, Boursorama, Klarna and Tier mobility.

Press contact IDnow
Katherina Riesner
[email protected]
+49 89 41324 6030

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Validation Cloud Secures $5.8 Million in Inaugural Funding to Propel Web3 Infrastructure

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ZUG, Switzerland, Feb. 28, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — In a significant stride towards revolutionizing Web3 infrastructure, Validation Cloud has proudly announced the successful closure of its first external investment round, amassing $5.8 million. Spearheaded by San Francisco-based Cadenza Ventures, this funding round exceeded expectations with contributions from an impressive roster of international investors, including Blockchain Founders Fund, Bloccelerate, Blockwall, Side Door Ventures, Metamatic, GS Futures, and AP Capital.

Alex Nwaka, Co-Founder of Validation Cloud, expressed enthusiasm about the funding, “This investment marks a pivotal moment for Validation Cloud as we aim to address the urgent demand for scalable and compliant Web3 infrastructure. We’re honored to collaborate with our investors who are instrumental in propelling the global adoption of our platform among cutting-edge networks, developers, and asset managers.”

Validation Cloud is at the forefront of Web3 technology, having developed an innovative system architecture that paves the way for significant advancements in the sector. Known as the “Cloudflare of Web3,” the company offers a robust, scalable, and intelligent platform providing Staking, Node API, and Data services, drawing inspiration from Cloudflare’s transformative impact on Web2 infrastructure.

Founded by veterans in the Proof-of-Stake domain, Validation Cloud boasts a team of highly experienced professionals from renowned organizations such as Uber, Workday, Deloitte, Citadel, Morgan Stanley, Binance, Crypto.com, Figure, R3, and more, emphasizing a talent-first approach with a worldwide workforce.

Kumar Dandapani, Managing Partner at Cadenza Ventures, highlighted the strategic vision behind their investment, “At Cadenza, we do not invest in just any company; we invest in the future of transformative technologies. Validation Cloud’s pioneering role in Proof-of-Stake and their relentless pursuit of next-generation Web3 infrastructure have set them apart as leaders in the Web3 space.”

Aly Madhavji, Managing Partner at Blockchain Founders Fund, shared his thoughts on the investment, “We believe in the transformative power of Web3 and its ability to redefine how businesses operate. Investing in Validation Cloud aligns perfectly with our vision of supporting innovative platforms that are ready to lead the next wave of digital transformation.”

Validation Cloud has earned a reputation for its close partnerships with networks from their nascent stages, supporting a wide array of ecosystems from established ones like Chainlink, Hedera, and Stellar to emerging networks such as Aptos, Eigenlayer, and Berachain. Their platform lays the groundwork for the enterprise adoption of networks, positioning Validation Cloud as a key player in the Web3 infrastructure landscape.

For further details on Validation Cloud and its offerings, please visit www.validationcloud.io.

Please contact: Kelly Clark, Director of Communications | [email protected] 

Funding Announcement for Validation Cloud by Alex Nwaka

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Klarna says its AI assistant does the work of 700 people after it laid off 700 people

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The Swedish fintech, which was criticized for its handling of a dramatic staff reduction in 2022, is touting new efficiencies powered by OpenAI.

Klarna is bullish on bots.

One month after taking its OpenAI-powered virtual assistant global, the Swedish buy-now, pay-later company has released new data touting its ability to handle customer communications, make shoppers happier, and even drive better financial results.

The app-based AI chatbot already handles two-thirds of all customer service chats, the company said Tuesday—some 2.3 million conversations so far—with the virtual assistant earning customer satisfaction ratings at the same level as human agents. Klarna, which is expected to go public this year and will need all the hype it can get at a time when investors have been generally frosty toward IPOs, estimates that the chatbot could help improve its profits by $40 million in 2024.

Announcing a partnership with OpenAI early last year, Klarna said it was one of the first companies to integrate the firm’s groundbreaking ChatGPT technology into a plug-in for shopping. The natural-language interface initially helped customers choose items and make other shopping-related decisions based on personalized queries, a feature Klarna described as “smooth shopping.”

The company has continued to build out its AI offerings since then. Its app-based assistants are now available to customers worldwide and handle a variety of tasks including refunds, cancellations, and even disputes.

Klarna boasted in its announcement on Tuesday that the AI assistant “is doing the equivalent work of 700 full-time agents.”

That statement may raise eyebrows for anyone who remembers the middle of 2022, when the company laid off roughly the same number of employees, then about 10% of its staff. At the time, CEO Sebastian Siemiatkowski cited economic uncertainty, inflation, and the likelihood of a recession as reasons for the cuts. He was criticized for his handling of the staff reduction after he shared a public spreadsheet on LinkedIn that contained the names of many of the laid-off workers.

Fast Company asked Klarna how the company arrived at its calculation for its AI assistant’s human-equivalent productivity. The company said the number of equivalent jobs the AI could perform wasn’t related to the layoffs. In a statement, a spokesperson said the company’s customer service is supported by four to five large third-parties that collectively have over 650,000 employees, and that it offers customers the option to speak with human agents if that’s what they prefer.

“This is in no way connected to the workforce reductions in May 2022, and making that conclusion would be incorrect,” the statement read. “We chose to share the figure of 700 to indicate the more long-term consequences of AI technology, where we believe it is important to be transparent in order to create an understanding in society. We think [it’s] important to proactively address these issues and encourage a thoughtful discussion around how society can meet and navigate this transformation.”

Companies have used chatbots for years to handle low-level customer queries and other interactions, although these tools are expected to become more versatile in the wake of advancements in artificial intellegence.

Source: Fast Company

The post Klarna says its AI assistant does the work of 700 people after it laid off 700 people appeared first on HIPTHER Alerts.

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KAPSARC Launches Saudi Arabia’s First School of Public Policy

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  • Inspired by His Royal Highness, the Minister of Energy, Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman Al Saud’s passion for education, human capital development and innovation, the KAPSARC School of Public Policy (KSPP) was founded as the first institution in Saudi Arabia dedicated to graduate studies and executive education in public policy.
  • Through its academic offerings, KSPP empowers individuals to tackle pressing public policy challenges and embrace the promising opportunities shaping the future.
  • KSPP’s facilities will run on 100% renewable energy, setting a precedent as one of the first net-zero facilities in the Saudi educational sector.

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia, Feb. 28, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — The King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Center (KAPSARC) has been granted an establishment license for its School of Public Policy (KSPP) after the recent approval by the Council of Ministers, and which was announced during the Human Capability Initiative (HCI) on February 28, 2024, conducted under the patronage of Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz, Crown Prince, Prime Minister, and the Chairman of the Human Capability Development Program Committee, one of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 Realization Programs.

Aiming to set new standards in policy studies, the school offers a two-year master’s degree and executive education programs designed to enable and empower future policy leaders and professionals within Saudi Arabia and globally to address the most pressing domestic and international public policy challenges in the public, non-profit and private sectors.

This significant achievement was announced by His Royal Highness, Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman Al Saud, the Minister of Energy, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of KAPSARC: “The vision for KAPSARC School of Public Policy is to develop the knowledge and skills that the new generation needs to shape public policy both locally and globally. Our mission is to empower and equip future policy leaders and professionals within Saudi Arabia and internationally to make informed socio-economic decisions.”

In a statement on the sidelines of the school’s launch, Fahad Alajlan, President of KAPSARC, stressed the Center’s mission to impact public policy on national, regional, and global levels. “Our new School of Public Policy will equip future leaders with the right skills to create data-driven and evidence-based public policy in line with Vision 2030 goals.”

Dr. Ghadah Alarifi, Founding Dean of KSPP, stated that, “Public policy serves as the foundation of societal progress. At KSPP, we aim to be a catalyst for collaboration, building a robust ecosystem that bridges academia, industry, and government in the public policy arena.”

By leveraging KAPSARC’s network, KSPP provides a platform for global engagement and career growth opportunities, offering practical application and flexible courses tailored to empower policymakers in different tracks including energy policy.

The school is committed to achieving high sustainability standards in the Saudi educational sector, including the goal of running on 100% renewable energy. This dedication ensures that KSPP meets its annual energy needs through on-site renewable resources, eliminating the use of fossil fuels.

For more information about KSPP, visit https://www.kapsarc.org/about-the-school/.

Follow KSPP on social media:

  • X: @KAPSARC_SPP
  • LinkedIn: @ KAPSARC School of Public Policy

About KAPSARC:

KAPSARC is a leading think tank dedicated to advancing knowledge on energy, environment, and regional economic issues. Accredited observer of UNFCCC, KAPSARC actively contributes to global climate action. The mission of KAPSARC is to advance Saudi Arabia’s energy sector and inform global policies through evidence-based advice and applied research. For more information about the center please visit: https://www.kapsarc.org/

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