“Positive crypto regulations will generate wealth and millions of jobs in India,” says Nischal…

“Positive crypto regulations will generate wealth and millions of jobs in India,” says Nischal Shetty, CEO of crypto exchange

In the first Financial Fox episode of 2019, crypto PR guru Stefania Barbaglio interviewed Nischal Shetty, Founder and CEO of WazirX, the most trusted crypto exchange in India. Shetty talks about the country’s ever-growing crypto scene and his online campaign to raise awareness about the importance of setting up a welcoming regulatory framework which will allow cryptocurrencies to improve the economic conditions of the Indian population.

Founded in 2018, WazirX is quickly expanding, at a 15% growth a month according to Shetty. WazirX is a Cryptocurrency exchange with an advanced trading interface and features to buy, sell and trade cryptocurrencies in India. It’s an exchange with a Live Open Order Book system that lets users trade digital assets like Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, Dash & many more.

The impressive growth of WazirX is in reality a reflection of the expansion of the crypto revolution in India. “The excitement around crypto in India is huge,” says Shetty, as he believes that there are collectively about 5 to 6 million cryptocurrency users in India, with highest concentration being among the younger population, who see crypto as the future of finance.

The current scene in India is not favourable for cryptocurrencies, although they have not been banned or made illegal by the government. The real problem now is lack of clear guidelines, as the Indian government has not been very forthcoming about where they stand in terms of cryptocurrencies, he says.

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) prohibited banks from enabling transactions related to cryptocurrencies and crypto exchanges from having bank accounts, but despite the banking ban, manyIndians are trading on crypto exchanges. In December 2018, WarziX reported a record in trading volumes.

Rumour has it that the government will release a draft for crypto policy in February, so with over 50k followers on social media, Shetty recently started the campaign #IndiaWantsCrypto to catch the attention of India’s Finance Ministry around cryptocurrency regulations: “We need positive regulations to allow Indians to be part of the crypto revolution that is happening around the world.”

More than just calling for official regulations, the campaign aims to show the advantages that cryptocurrencies can bring to people’s lives, especially in emerging economies like India.

India has the second-largest unbanked population in the world — over 190 million Indians over the age of 15 don’t have a bank account — but has one of the largest numbers of smartphones in the world. Cryptocurrencies act at the heart of this problem: “Internet penetration is faster and higher in India — and when you have internet you have access to cryptocurrencies.”

The blockchain space offers many opportunities for youth; Shetty believes that implementing positive regulations and allowing Indian people to integrate the digital currency economy will bring wealth and millions of jobs, creating a big boost for the national economy: “Over the last 10–15 years, the IT boom created possibly around 4 million jobs in India. This same effect can be replicated now in the crypto revolution with positive regulations in place,” said Shetty.

Talks about crypto regulations have gained more attention worldwide. Recently, two major European authorities have publicly called for better assessments of crypto technology and its impacts in order to develop appropriate regulations.

More developments are expected soon in the crypto regulatory space in India. Follow us on @cassiopeia_ltd and subscribe to our YouTube channel FinancialFox.

“Positive crypto regulations will generate wealth and millions of jobs in India,” says Nischal…

“Positive crypto regulations will generate wealth and millions of jobs in India,” says Nischal Shetty, CEO of crypto exchange

In the first Financial Fox episode of 2019, crypto PR guru Stefania Barbaglio interviewed Nischal Shetty, Founder and CEO of WazirX, the most trusted crypto exchange in India. Shetty talks about the country’s ever-growing crypto scene and his online campaign to raise awareness about the importance of setting up a welcoming regulatory framework which will allow cryptocurrencies to improve the economic conditions of the Indian population.

Founded in 2018, WazirX is quickly expanding, at a 15% growth a month according to Shetty. WazirX is a Cryptocurrency exchange with an advanced trading interface and features to buy, sell and trade cryptocurrencies in India. It’s an exchange with a Live Open Order Book system that lets users trade digital assets like Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, Dash & many more.

The impressive growth of WazirX is in reality a reflection of the expansion of the crypto revolution in India. “The excitement around crypto in India is huge,” says Shetty, as he believes that there are collectively about 5 to 6 million cryptocurrency users in India, with highest concentration being among the younger population, who see crypto as the future of finance.

The current scene in India is not favourable for cryptocurrencies, although they have not been banned or made illegal by the government. The real problem now is lack of clear guidelines, as the Indian government has not been very forthcoming about where they stand in terms of cryptocurrencies, he says.

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) prohibited banks from enabling transactions related to cryptocurrencies and crypto exchanges from having bank accounts, but despite the banking ban, manyIndians are trading on crypto exchanges. In December 2018, WarziX reported a record in trading volumes.

Rumour has it that the government will release a draft for crypto policy in February, so with over 50k followers on social media, Shetty recently started the campaign #IndiaWantsCrypto to catch the attention of India’s Finance Ministry around cryptocurrency regulations: “We need positive regulations to allow Indians to be part of the crypto revolution that is happening around the world.”

More than just calling for official regulations, the campaign aims to show the advantages that cryptocurrencies can bring to people’s lives, especially in emerging economies like India.

India has the second-largest unbanked population in the world — over 190 million Indians over the age of 15 don’t have a bank account — but has one of the largest numbers of smartphones in the world. Cryptocurrencies act at the heart of this problem: “Internet penetration is faster and higher in India — and when you have internet you have access to cryptocurrencies.”

The blockchain space offers many opportunities for youth; Shetty believes that implementing positive regulations and allowing Indian people to integrate the digital currency economy will bring wealth and millions of jobs, creating a big boost for the national economy: “Over the last 10–15 years, the IT boom created possibly around 4 million jobs in India. This same effect can be replicated now in the crypto revolution with positive regulations in place,” said Shetty.

Talks about crypto regulations have gained more attention worldwide. Recently, two major European authorities have publicly called for better assessments of crypto technology and its impacts in order to develop appropriate regulations.

More developments are expected soon in the crypto regulatory space in India. Follow us on @cassiopeia_ltd and subscribe to our YouTube channel FinancialFox.

Digibyte’s 5-year journey and what lies ahead

DigiByte’s 5-year journey and what lies ahead

On January 10th, DigiByte celebrated its 5th anniversary and completed 8.000.000 blocks and has become the largest, fastest and most secure blockchain in current existence. DigiByte has a history of constant improvement, living up to its motto of the forward-thinking coin.

Over its 5-year journey, DigiByte has repeatedly improved, setting itself apart from other cryptocurrencies with multiple blockchain firsts such as SegWit, MulitAlgo Mining and DigiShield.

“I’d argue that the DigiByte we have today is the most advanced blockchain in the world , with the most steadfast secure set up,” said DigiByte founder Jared Tate in a reflection of the coin’s five years of development.

DigiByte has one of the strongest use cases in the cryptocurrency market: DGB can support over 48 million transactions a day: 10 times the current transaction capacity of the top 50 blockchains by market cap.

Over recent months, we have seen significant progression for DigiByte, such as the implementation of ASIC Protection for Next-Generation Blockchain Mining to further decentralise the DGB network, as well as the listing on Bitfinex, one of the largest and most important crypto exchanges.

Strong community

Throughout these five years, DigiByte has attracted more and more followers because of its genuine intention to create a financial system centered around people and social value. The community-driven effort and the tremendous faith that all those involved in DGB have in the project are the key factors that make DGB so unique and compelling.

DigiByte today has one of the most connected and engaging communities in the crypto space. DGB followers have set up foundations and networks to spread the word about the mass adoption potential of DigiByte.

Last November, DigiByte enthusiasts based in the UK and Europe had the chance to meet each other for the first time and talk to Jared himself at the first UK DigiByte Event,held in central London.

Decentralisation at the heart of DigiByte

More than a cryptocurrency, DigiByte offers the most reliable blockchain structure to support transactions at an uninterrupted global level.

In fact, the ultimate objective for DigiByte is to re-build the infrastructure of the internet today. Founder Jared Tate believes that an efficient blockchain can solve 90–95% of the security vulnerabilities in the internet today. The centralised databases which support the current system, such as Facebook, Google and YouTube, act as a catalyst for single points of failure. When all the valuable information is stored in one single place, vulnerabilities to hacks and breaches increase, as well as allowing surveillance and data control from central institutions.

The solution to fix the current system would, therefore, be to build a decentralised architecture for the internet, supported by sophisticated and advanced blockchain structures. A decentralised framework is user-centered, not relying on intermediary platforms to connect users and services.

In order to support this new internet model, DigiByte is built in 3 blockchain layers:

- Applications layer: The top layer of DGB to be used in everyday, real-world applications, such as DApps and Smart Contracts

- Digital Asset Layer/ Public Ledger Layer: The layer in which all DGB transactions are stored in an immutable public ledger, providing maximum security.

  • Core Protocol Layer: The bottom layers, made of decentralised nodes across the planet, where all communication and operation procedures occur.

What’s next?

The DGB community has plenty to look forward to into the near future. The first global DigiByte Summit will take place in Amsterdam on 19th April 2019. The theme of the Summit is ‘The Power of Decentralisation’ and its agenda will expand on the multitude of possibilities and uses enabled by decentralised technologies.

Stefania Barbaglio, Director at Cassiopeia Services — official PR for DigiByte commented: “Cassiopeia is thrilled to be organising and hosting the first ever DigiByte Summit next April. DigiByte represents the true power of decentralised technologies: It offers top security, performs transactions faster than any other crypto and has one of the strongest use cases in the crypto market. Blockchain technology has unlocked a new era where decentralised networks and markets empower individuals and change society and the global economy.”

Registrations are open to DigiByte Global Summit here

In the long-run, DGB investors can be cheerful as crypto analysts say that Digibyte has the potential to reach $1 as the coin develops and its features become more sophisticated over time.

More than that, we are likely to see the increasing deployment of DigiByte platform to projects such as Antum and V-ID, which power blockchain to provide verification and digital identity services.

Keep an eye out for the upcoming exclusive interview on FinancialFox news with Josiah Spackman, DigiByte Foundation Ambassador. Follow us on @cassiopeia_ltd and subscribe to our YouTube channel.

Digibyte’s 5-year journey and what lies ahead

DigiByte’s 5-year journey and what lies ahead

On January 10th, DigiByte celebrated its 5th anniversary and completed 8.000.000 blocks and has become the largest, fastest and most secure blockchain in current existence. DigiByte has a history of constant improvement, living up to its motto of the forward-thinking coin.

Over its 5-year journey, DigiByte has repeatedly improved, setting itself apart from other cryptocurrencies with multiple blockchain firsts such as SegWit, MulitAlgo Mining and DigiShield.

“I’d argue that the DigiByte we have today is the most advanced blockchain in the world , with the most steadfast secure set up,” said DigiByte founder Jared Tate in a reflection of the coin’s five years of development.

DigiByte has one of the strongest use cases in the cryptocurrency market: DGB can support over 48 million transactions a day: 10 times the current transaction capacity of the top 50 blockchains by market cap.

Over recent months, we have seen significant progression for DigiByte, such as the implementation of ASIC Protection for Next-Generation Blockchain Mining to further decentralise the DGB network, as well as the listing on Bitfinex, one of the largest and most important crypto exchanges.

Strong community

Throughout these five years, DigiByte has attracted more and more followers because of its genuine intention to create a financial system centered around people and social value. The community-driven effort and the tremendous faith that all those involved in DGB have in the project are the key factors that make DGB so unique and compelling.

DigiByte today has one of the most connected and engaging communities in the crypto space. DGB followers have set up foundations and networks to spread the word about the mass adoption potential of DigiByte.

Last November, DigiByte enthusiasts based in the UK and Europe had the chance to meet each other for the first time and talk to Jared himself at the first UK DigiByte Event,held in central London.

Decentralisation at the heart of DigiByte

More than a cryptocurrency, DigiByte offers the most reliable blockchain structure to support transactions at an uninterrupted global level.

In fact, the ultimate objective for DigiByte is to re-build the infrastructure of the internet today. Founder Jared Tate believes that an efficient blockchain can solve 90–95% of the security vulnerabilities in the internet today. The centralised databases which support the current system, such as Facebook, Google and YouTube, act as a catalyst for single points of failure. When all the valuable information is stored in one single place, vulnerabilities to hacks and breaches increase, as well as allowing surveillance and data control from central institutions.

The solution to fix the current system would, therefore, be to build a decentralised architecture for the internet, supported by sophisticated and advanced blockchain structures. A decentralised framework is user-centered, not relying on intermediary platforms to connect users and services.

In order to support this new internet model, DigiByte is built in 3 blockchain layers:

- Applications layer: The top layer of DGB to be used in everyday, real-world applications, such as DApps and Smart Contracts

- Digital Asset Layer/ Public Ledger Layer: The layer in which all DGB transactions are stored in an immutable public ledger, providing maximum security.

  • Core Protocol Layer: The bottom layers, made of decentralised nodes across the planet, where all communication and operation procedures occur.

What’s next?

The DGB community has plenty to look forward to into the near future. The first global DigiByte Summit will take place in Amsterdam on 19th April 2019. The theme of the Summit is ‘The Power of Decentralisation’ and its agenda will expand on the multitude of possibilities and uses enabled by decentralised technologies.

Stefania Barbaglio, Director at Cassiopeia Services — official PR for DigiByte commented: “Cassiopeia is thrilled to be organising and hosting the first ever DigiByte Summit next April. DigiByte represents the true power of decentralised technologies: It offers top security, performs transactions faster than any other crypto and has one of the strongest use cases in the crypto market. Blockchain technology has unlocked a new era where decentralised networks and markets empower individuals and change society and the global economy.”

Registrations are open to DigiByte Global Summit here

In the long-run, DGB investors can be cheerful as crypto analysts say that Digibyte has the potential to reach $1 as the coin develops and its features become more sophisticated over time.

More than that, we are likely to see the increasing deployment of DigiByte platform to projects such as Antum and V-ID, which power blockchain to provide verification and digital identity services.

Keep an eye out for the upcoming exclusive interview on FinancialFox news with Josiah Spackman, DigiByte Foundation Ambassador. Follow us on @cassiopeia_ltd and subscribe to our YouTube channel.

Calls for crypto regulation gather momentum around the world

As the crypto market matures and gains relevance within the global economy, executives, investors and even public bodies worldwide are calling for clearer crypto regulations.

In 2017 we witnessed the ‘Bitcoin boom’, with skyrocketing prices and major attention driven towards cryptocurrencies.

Since the Bitcoin Boom in 2017, the crypto market has exploded with Initial Coin Offerings — the controversial ICOs — with many of those projects, under the flag of the crypto revolution, proving to be nothing more than artifice designed to trick eager investors into putting money into a business that was never realised.

Nevertheless, the high number of fraudulent ICOs is more a representation of dubious morals than a testament of the actual revolutionary nature of blockchain. The challenge posed by the introduction of cryptocurrencies and tokens has allowed for an expansion of investment opportunities for new groups of investors, as well as giving millions of unbanked people around the world an alternative means of finance.

This realisation is slowly spreading among financial regulators, which are now exploring the ways that crypto technology can be integrated into the widerfinancial and regulatory market framework.

In recent months, with the rise in the popularity of tokenised securities — a SEC-compliant class of digital assets, comparable to equities stocks — the theme of regulation is spreading across the crypto space.

At the moment, although the EU does not present a unified framework regarding cryptocurrencies — regulations vary by state members — the European Central Bank has shown plenty of initiatives in exploring ways to regulate and manage cryptocurrencies.

In the beginning of 2019 alone, two major European regulatory bodies, the European Banking Authority (EBA) and the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) have publicly called for better assessments of crypto technology and its impacts in order to develop appropriate regulations.

In an official statement, the EBA said it is calling for regulations to protect investors above all, and has asked the European Commission for a comprehensive analysis to assess whether unified crypto rules are needed across the region. In addition, the ESMA’s recommendations advise the EU Commission on the current regulations which can be suitably applied to crypto assets.

In the emerging markets scene, where the positive effects of cryptocurrencies are more tangible, calls for regulation have also risen, with movements urging authorities to work on implementing and regulating cryptocurrencies.

In India, where the legalisation of digital currencies has become a divisive topic, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has put a ban on banks and any regulated financial institutions from “dealing with or settling virtual currencies”. The move in April 2018 sparked backlash from crypto enthusiasts, who defend their right to enjoy alternative finance means.

The CEO of India-based Cryptocurrency Exchange WazirX, Nischal Shetty, kicked off a social media campaign to attract the attention of Indian financial regulators over the need for ‘positive regulation’ ofcryptocurrencies, which provide the Indian population with an innovative, necessary and accessible tool for economic growth: “Please bring positive regulations in crypto and over 5 million crypto Indians will be thankful to you. Youth of India have found a new way to make wealth & this is especially important when there are not enough jobs for everyone,” he said.

Crypto experts have already stated that 2019 should be “the year of crypto regulation” and represents an important move towards allowing the blockchain revolution to truly thrive and improve financial practices around the world.

“Regulations are a necessary step to take the crypto industry to the next level. We have seen numerous cases of fraud and scams in the ICO space in the last couple of years, which has put off institutional investors and created a sense of distrust in crypto projects. However, with a regulatory framework in place, cryptocurrencies and tokens are no longer products of mere speculation. They have become real assets. It benefits both the investor side and companies themselves, and shows the maturity of the crypto market,” says Stefania Barbaglio, Director at Cassiopeia Services, leading crypto & blockchain PR.

Keep an eye out for upcoming interview with Nischal Shetty about the crypto scene in India and the impact of cryptocurrencies on emerging markets. Follow us on @cassiopeia_ltd and subscribe to our YouTube channel FinancialFox.

Calls for crypto regulation gather momentum around the world

As the crypto market matures and gains relevance within the global economy, executives, investors and even public bodies worldwide are calling for clearer crypto regulations.

In 2017 we witnessed the ‘Bitcoin boom’, with skyrocketing prices and major attention driven towards cryptocurrencies.

Since the Bitcoin Boom in 2017, the crypto market has exploded with Initial Coin Offerings — the controversial ICOs — with many of those projects, under the flag of the crypto revolution, proving to be nothing more than artifice designed to trick eager investors into putting money into a business that was never realised.

Nevertheless, the high number of fraudulent ICOs is more a representation of dubious morals than a testament of the actual revolutionary nature of blockchain. The challenge posed by the introduction of cryptocurrencies and tokens has allowed for an expansion of investment opportunities for new groups of investors, as well as giving millions of unbanked people around the world an alternative means of finance.

This realisation is slowly spreading among financial regulators, which are now exploring the ways that crypto technology can be integrated into the widerfinancial and regulatory market framework.

In recent months, with the rise in the popularity of tokenised securities — a SEC-compliant class of digital assets, comparable to equities stocks — the theme of regulation is spreading across the crypto space.

At the moment, although the EU does not present a unified framework regarding cryptocurrencies — regulations vary by state members — the European Central Bank has shown plenty of initiatives in exploring ways to regulate and manage cryptocurrencies.

In the beginning of 2019 alone, two major European regulatory bodies, the European Banking Authority (EBA) and the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) have publicly called for better assessments of crypto technology and its impacts in order to develop appropriate regulations.

In an official statement, the EBA said it is calling for regulations to protect investors above all, and has asked the European Commission for a comprehensive analysis to assess whether unified crypto rules are needed across the region. In addition, the ESMA’s recommendations advise the EU Commission on the current regulations which can be suitably applied to crypto assets.

In the emerging markets scene, where the positive effects of cryptocurrencies are more tangible, calls for regulation have also risen, with movements urging authorities to work on implementing and regulating cryptocurrencies.

In India, where the legalisation of digital currencies has become a divisive topic, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has put a ban on banks and any regulated financial institutions from “dealing with or settling virtual currencies”. The move in April 2018 sparked backlash from crypto enthusiasts, who defend their right to enjoy alternative finance means.

The CEO of India-based Cryptocurrency Exchange WazirX, Nischal Shetty, kicked off a social media campaign to attract the attention of Indian financial regulators over the need for ‘positive regulation’ ofcryptocurrencies, which provide the Indian population with an innovative, necessary and accessible tool for economic growth: “Please bring positive regulations in crypto and over 5 million crypto Indians will be thankful to you. Youth of India have found a new way to make wealth & this is especially important when there are not enough jobs for everyone,” he said.

Crypto experts have already stated that 2019 should be “the year of crypto regulation” and represents an important move towards allowing the blockchain revolution to truly thrive and improve financial practices around the world.

“Regulations are a necessary step to take the crypto industry to the next level. We have seen numerous cases of fraud and scams in the ICO space in the last couple of years, which has put off institutional investors and created a sense of distrust in crypto projects. However, with a regulatory framework in place, cryptocurrencies and tokens are no longer products of mere speculation. They have become real assets. It benefits both the investor side and companies themselves, and shows the maturity of the crypto market,” says Stefania Barbaglio, Director at Cassiopeia Services, leading crypto & blockchain PR.

Keep an eye out for upcoming interview with Nischal Shetty about the crypto scene in India and the impact of cryptocurrencies on emerging markets. Follow us on @cassiopeia_ltd and subscribe to our YouTube channel FinancialFox.

The era of digital trading: New technologies to transform trading landscape

Commodity trading is no revolutionary activity; yet, the introduction of digital technologies over the last few years has enabled the development of a new environment and advanced practices, better aligned to meet the objectives of traders and investors.

Estimates show that about $10 trillion worth of commodities are produced and consumed per annum globally. Each of these commodities completes its cycle along the supply chain, but until now it had not been possible to integrate and exchange information between them.

The convenience and speed brought by the digitisation of trading opens the commodities markets to new classes of investors, with the need for more transparent and efficient commodity trading practices being addressed through open-sourced technologies. The very same disruptive technologies which are being deployed in various other industries, particularly prominent in fintech, can also make trading a more efficient and reliable undertaking.

The digitisation of trading includes the implementation of tech features into systems to allow better performance, as well as initiating a shift in the structure of assets themselves: digital assets are increasingly popular and comparable to traditional equity stocks, with the advantage of being more user-friendly and accessible.

If on one hand, digital assets are democratising the market, the digital tools within their structure help with understanding and processing of the cycles and behaviours of commodities trading, allowing for better informed decisions and improved risk management. They also provide closer estimates and predictions about demand, markets swings and external sentiment.

The rise of Digital & Tokenised Securities

The new year started on full steam around tokenised securities, with the recent launch of a trading platform by DX.Exchange that allows investors to buy the security tokens of popular Nasdaq-listed companies, such as Apple, Tesla, Facebook and Netflix.

“By tokenizing stocks of some of the biggest publicly-traded companies like Google, Amazon, Facebook and more, we are opening an untapped market of millions of old and new traders around the globe cutting out the middleman,” said Amedeo Moscato, DX’s chief operating officer to CNBC.

The important difference is that STOs are asset-backed and fall within regulatory parameters, working similarly to the way IPOs do in the equities market. Therefore, security tokens are naturally less susceptible to market volatility and offer better security to both investors and companies.

With tokenised securities, tokens can be transacted on a global scale, allowing borderless transactions 24/7 anywhere in the world regardless of business hours and time zones, even outside market hours. Thus, tokens are bound to become increasingly popular and regulatory frameworks should continue addressing them more fully.

Usually stored in smartphone-based digital wallets, tokens are secure and immutable, representing a more attractive alternative to the old environment of the stock market.

These digital assets are supported by the integration of other technology intrinsic to market and trading mechanisms, especially artificial intelligence, blockchain and biodata.

● The terms Artificial intelligence and machine learning represent computer software that learns automatically through patterns in stored data. The implementation of AI algorithms into trading systems generates improved responses through a predetermined logic, which leads to more accurate results and reduced costs and losses.

● In the realms of both physical commodities or digital assets, Blockchain is a useful technology as it allows storage and transactions to be optimised. More than enabling cryptocurrencies and tokens, because of its decentralisation, automated data and strong security framework, blockchain is an ideal underlying structural technology for new trading platforms .

● Some innovative mechanisms are working beyond the trading machinery to improve activity at human level as well. Platforms such as NeuroTrader harness biodata and AI within a platform designed to optimise trader performance. Based on studies around trader behaviour, the platform uses neuro and psychological information to stipulate the best trading decisions. The purpose is to create an advanced risk-management tool for professional traders and mitigate losses.

“The new generation of digital technologies like AI, blockchain and Big Data, are very versatile.They can be deployed to various ends to meet different needs across virtually all industries. In the case of trading, these new tools add value to investor experience and nurture a more transparent and open environment,” says Stefania Barbaglio, Director at Cassiopeia Services.

The era of digital trading: New technologies to transform trading landscape

Commodity trading is no revolutionary activity; yet, the introduction of digital technologies over the last few years has enabled the development of a new environment and advanced practices, better aligned to meet the objectives of traders and investors.

Estimates show that about $10 trillion worth of commodities are produced and consumed per annum globally. Each of these commodities completes its cycle along the supply chain, but until now it had not been possible to integrate and exchange information between them.

The convenience and speed brought by the digitisation of trading opens the commodities markets to new classes of investors, with the need for more transparent and efficient commodity trading practices being addressed through open-sourced technologies. The very same disruptive technologies which are being deployed in various other industries, particularly prominent in fintech, can also make trading a more efficient and reliable undertaking.

The digitisation of trading includes the implementation of tech features into systems to allow better performance, as well as initiating a shift in the structure of assets themselves: digital assets are increasingly popular and comparable to traditional equity stocks, with the advantage of being more user-friendly and accessible.

If on one hand, digital assets are democratising the market, the digital tools within their structure help with understanding and processing of the cycles and behaviours of commodities trading, allowing for better informed decisions and improved risk management. They also provide closer estimates and predictions about demand, markets swings and external sentiment.

The rise of Digital & Tokenised Securities

The new year started on full steam around tokenised securities, with the recent launch of a trading platform by DX.Exchange that allows investors to buy the security tokens of popular Nasdaq-listed companies, such as Apple, Tesla, Facebook and Netflix.

“By tokenizing stocks of some of the biggest publicly-traded companies like Google, Amazon, Facebook and more, we are opening an untapped market of millions of old and new traders around the globe cutting out the middleman,” said Amedeo Moscato, DX’s chief operating officer to CNBC.

The important difference is that STOs are asset-backed and fall within regulatory parameters, working similarly to the way IPOs do in the equities market. Therefore, security tokens are naturally less susceptible to market volatility and offer better security to both investors and companies.

With tokenised securities, tokens can be transacted on a global scale, allowing borderless transactions 24/7 anywhere in the world regardless of business hours and time zones, even outside market hours. Thus, tokens are bound to become increasingly popular and regulatory frameworks should continue addressing them more fully.

Usually stored in smartphone-based digital wallets, tokens are secure and immutable, representing a more attractive alternative to the old environment of the stock market.

These digital assets are supported by the integration of other technology intrinsic to market and trading mechanisms, especially artificial intelligence, blockchain and biodata.

● The terms Artificial intelligence and machine learning represent computer software that learns automatically through patterns in stored data. The implementation of AI algorithms into trading systems generates improved responses through a predetermined logic, which leads to more accurate results and reduced costs and losses.

● In the realms of both physical commodities or digital assets, Blockchain is a useful technology as it allows storage and transactions to be optimised. More than enabling cryptocurrencies and tokens, because of its decentralisation, automated data and strong security framework, blockchain is an ideal underlying structural technology for new trading platforms .

● Some innovative mechanisms are working beyond the trading machinery to improve activity at human level as well. Platforms such as NeuroTrader harness biodata and AI within a platform designed to optimise trader performance. Based on studies around trader behaviour, the platform uses neuro and psychological information to stipulate the best trading decisions. The purpose is to create an advanced risk-management tool for professional traders and mitigate losses.

“The new generation of digital technologies like AI, blockchain and Big Data, are very versatile.They can be deployed to various ends to meet different needs across virtually all industries. In the case of trading, these new tools add value to investor experience and nurture a more transparent and open environment,” says Stefania Barbaglio, Director at Cassiopeia Services.

All eyes on Southeast Asia for FinTech growth in 2019

Nations in Southeast Asia are reportedly among the hottest spots for FinTech opportunities in 2019. Growing economic activities and government incentives are attracting FinTech solutions to various sector. Reports show optimistic look for companies in the space of digital banking and payments, AI and blockchain technology.

A report from Deloitte published on 31 December 2018 estimated that FinTech investments in Southeast Asian countries in 2018 have exceeded the $5.7 billion invested in 2017 by up to 30%. Google’s e-Conomy SEA report anticipated the Internet economy in Southeast Asia to have increased by 44% in 2018. This robust growth is set to continue as the FinTech market is projected to reach US$72 billion by 2020.

Investment in technology is substantial in the area: technology firms represented a significant 40% of total private equity deals in Southeast Asia in 2017. In the Q1 2018 alone, more than $2 billion were invested in Asia tech companies; and more than 60% of investors from South East Asia say that technology is their focus area in 2018–19 — FinTech being the largest sub-sector, followed by Artificial Intelligence and Blockchain.

Organisations such as TechGrind have ambitions of making Southeast Asian nations the “home” to a new Silicon Valley, working to develop a healthy and attractive environment for start-ups to run their operations.

One of the main reasons underlying growth and adoption is insufficient financial inclusion which opens plenty of opportunities for fintech companies to implement and expand their reach. Across the region, less than 30% of the population have a bank account — in less developed countries such as Cambodia, this number falls to 5%.

Fintech solutions tap exactly into this enourmous gap between the unbanked population and access to financial services. Therefore, the demand for digital payment, mobile wallets and alternative finance is high and increasing.

In the Asia Pacific region, Singapore is the leading nation in the technology space, particularly regarding the development of smart cities and hyper-connectivity. In Indonesia, the largest economy in Southeast Asia, digital payment platforms are growing at a fast pace. Indonesians are the most connected population among emerging markets and very open to alternative payment methods. In 2018, Indonesian e-wallet OVO performed 75 times more transactions in comparison to 2017. The company’s focus is to increase the rate of financial inclusion in the country and support small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

According to government statements, Vietnam plans to become a cashless society by 2020, targeting to reduce the number of cash transactions to less than 10% of total payments in consumer-ends such as supermarkets, shopping malls and distributors. The plan includes proposals to develop and increase new payment methods in rural and remote areas of the country to boost financial inclusion as to at least 70% of Vietnamese over the age of 15 owning a bank account by the end of 2020.

In the blockchain sphere, Thailand is moving to become a more crypto-friendly market. Thai cryptocurrency exchange Satang Corp. said in December 2018 it plans to raise nearly $10 million in a security token offering (STO). According to the crypto media publication Cointelegraph, Satang plans are supported by the Thai government who is seeking to develop an appropriate regulatory framework for blockchain projects and cryptocurrencies, as well as turning the country into a hub for blockchain firms.

Beyond the financial sphere, tech is also making strides. In the news industry, for example, Google has launched the Google News Initiative Asia Pacific Innovation Challenge. The fund will be directed to projects which use innovative technologies to create and improve the quality of journalism in the area.

Southeast Asian nations represent the game-changing nature of FinTech and disruptive technologies, with cutting-edge applications causing social change and solid ground for investment and market expansion.

“Emerging markets represent the greatest opportunities for fintech companies. Southeast Asia is particularly attractive: it has a very tech-savvy population and governments who welcome new technologies,” says Stefania Barbaglio, Director of Cassiopeia Services, agency working in multiple projects in emerging economies.

“Tech enables leapfrogging in developing economies — FinTech solutions hold power to catalyse economic growth and societal improvements, so we will see big things happening in this space in 2019.”

UK plans to revamp digital identity system by handing over to private sector in 2020

The UK government recently unveiled plans to pass on the management of the Verify system to the private sector, after a period of unsuccessful results. Regardless of who takes over the responsibility, handling digital identities is a major task and should be approached with due concern.

In October, the UK government announced that it will ceased investment in ‘Verify’, the digital identity system. The decision was later followed by moves of opening up opportunities for the private sector to take over.

“The Government expects that commercial organisations will create and reuse digital identities, and accelerate the creation of an interoperable digital identity market,” said Oliver Dowden, Minister for Implementation at the Cabinet Office.

“The approach announced today ensures that Gov.uk Verify will continue to protect public sector digital services from cyber threats, including identity fraud, and other malicious activity. In addition, the contracts enable the private sector to develop affordable identity assurance services that will meet future private and public sector needs,”

Verify was launched in 2011 with the aim of providing a single platform for public services, from tax collection to benefits. An integrated modern ID system means that separate departments don’t have to set up their own, saving time and resources.

Although the idea behind Verify was sound, its execution has been poor and disappointing: 56% of people who try to create a Verify identity are unable to do so.

What is digital identity?

A digital identity is a set of information about an individual or an entity, stored in computer systems. This file is used to assess and authenticate the identity of a user looking to work with or access a service.

Digital identity is perhaps the single most important asset individuals possess in this age, so there is much at stake in a digital ID system. One of the fundamental problems with such systems is cybersecurity. In this year alone, half a million users had their data exposed with the hack of Google+, and another 29 million in the Facebook data breach.

On the other hand, new legislation has been put in place to start tackling the vulnerabilities within the cyber environment — one of the most significant being the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which imposes hefty fines on companies and institutions which do not carefully follow the instructions set out to protect their users’ information.

Data security is a highly concerning problem because it has been growing at an exceedingly quick pace: 90 percent of the world’s data was generated over the last two years alone, while 2.5 quintillion bytes of data are being created every day.

There is evidently an urgent to develop systems that can store, support and manage such an amount of information effectively. The best approach is a collective one, where governments, companies and individuals work together.

Creating a secure and authentic system powered by blockchain

Because of its decentralisation, automated data and strong security framework, blockchain is an ideal underlying structural technology to underpin online platforms that promote more authentic relationships between users and a healthier social media environment overall.

In order to address the issue, innovative technology companies are deploying disruptive tools to build a verified, secure and fast system to integrate digital identities whilst leaving each user fully in control of their own information.

Right of Reply (RoR) is one of the leading projects in this space. Led by a team of digital identity experts, RoR is developing multiple blockchain-powered platforms that integrate digital ID into different sectors, such as financial services, online media and social networks.

RoRKey, one of Right of Reply subsidiaries, focuses on aligning digital and real identity to allow verifiable identity and truth. RoRKey offers verified digital reputation identities for registered users (DRI Standard and DRI Pro), which allow them to interact in a secure and protected ecosystem in various social communications and online media content, as well as offering a verified ID that can used for different services within Right of Reply and its partners.

Right of Reply and RorKey are planning to partner with other third parties such as financial institutions, utility and insurance companies, online payment platforms, websites and social media to use DRI Pro as the means to prove the user’s digital identity. The plan for DRI Pro is to become an officially recognised legal proof of ID.

“In the digitised economy, individuals and organisations will be recognised by their digital identities. But most importantly, we need to be able to trust the systems that store digital IDs. Blockchain is the right technology for this end: It is decentralised, effective and minimises the need for trust”. says Stefania Barbaglio, from Right of Reply.