A lot of people who are into cryptocurrencies will see this FinCen leak as vindication and proof that banks are money launderers. But, this will be used against cryptocurrencies...
See the correct analysis of this news is that AML/CTF and KYC don't work. They will never work because they try to control the *tool* not the *criminal act*. It's not the money that is illicit, it's the use of that money to commit crimes.
I've talked about this extensively. Not only is the use of money as a crime-control mechanism ineffective, it has terrible consequences that increase poverty for billions by creating economic exclusion. So it's not just useless, it is "Worse than Useless"
"Worse than Useless" is the title of a talk I gave about this topic. For the illusion of unatainable security and crime fighting we get two obvious and unavoidable results: billions cut out of the financial system and enormous corrupting power given to regulators and bankers.
But despite this obvious truth, nothing is going to change. In fact, this report will be used to *increase* the use of controls and surveillance. In govt if something doesn't work, you do MORE of it. So this will result in stricter AML/CTF rules.
These new rules will also not work. These new rules will also corrupt more bankers, regulators, cops and politicians. These new rules will destroy opportunity for millions more people. But they will offer the comfort of righteous rhetoric against evil while creating more evil
As these new rules are applied, banking will become even harder for poor people, undocumented people and people on the fringes of society. It won't stop criminals from criming. It will stop poor people from rising out of poverty. It will make banks even more competition-proof
These new rules will make government surveillance worse and will erode democratic institutions. They will make it possible for dictators to economically surveil, control, and eventually extinguish any opposition. They will use US surveillance tech to impose financial fascism
Then of course, the need and value of open financial systems based on open, private, and uncensorable cryptocurrencies will increase dramatically. When all the money in the world has been deliberately broken to serve this unachievable goal, the only money that works is crypto
More and more people will need to use cryptocurrency in order to participate in the global economy, because control-currency doesn't work as money. A medium of exchange can't also work as a medium of control. They break money to stop crime, even though it is a futile effort
That makes crypto-currency a systemic threat, not to the economic nature of national money, but to the control and surveillance system of geopolitical money. Math money doesn't play politics, which makes it automatically "rogue" money.
Open and private crypto-currencies won't comply with these regulations, because they CAN'T comply without breaking every feature and capability they have. If some try to comply they will have to compete against gov-crypto and facebook-crypto (they will lose)
Then the war on cash and the war on "illicit" money becomes an all out war on the only money that still works. The free, open, borderless, neutral, immutable, censorship resistant money that crypto-currencies like Bitcoin offer
The only type of money (crypto) that poor, undocumented, oppressed, and controlled populations can use will of course be attacked. But they will not have any choice but to continue to use cryptocurrency. Billions are already unbanked by fiat controls.
This FinCen leak is worthy of our ridicule because it reveals the hypocrisy of those who argue that crypto-currency is for money launderers. Banking *is* money laundering on a massive scale. But the solution is not to tighten controls on money. That won't work
The solution is to stop trying to use money (a tool) to fight crime (human nature). But if you think the hypocrites will back down and adopt sensible systems and laws that enable human trade and economic inclusion, you are wrong. They will double down with even more control
This isn't good news. This is the excuse they will use to double down on surveillance and control. To make money a tool of naked political power. No matter how many billions these measures condemn to poverty.
"The guy is straight out lying. There is guaranteed no missing tx as the data was collected directly from the source." (source)
"I also had these data points and went through them to remove non-retail transactions, on both TravelbyBit and HULA." (source)He admits to have removed non-BCH tx by "Game Ranger" because he considers them non-retail (source). He also implies they might be involved in money laundering and that TBB might fail their AML obligations in processing Game Ranger's transactions (source).
"The website only shows transactions from the last 7 days and then they disappear. No way for anyone to access stats beyond that." (source)he felt confident to claim that I would be
unable to provide a source for the [missing] data and/or prove that that data was not already included in the report. (source)Luckily for us Hayden Otto seems to dislike his competitor TravelByBit so much that he attempted to reframe Bitcoin's RBF feature as a vulnerability specific to TBB PoS system (source).
"You can literally access it from a public URL in the Web browser. There is no login or anything required, just type in the name of the merchant." (source)As of yet it is unclear if this is intentional by TBB or if Hayden Ottos followed the rules of responsible disclosure before publishing this kind of data leak.
|TBB wo. Game Ranger||$5,407|
|TBB according to Hayden||$3,737|
|1||17 Sep 19 09:28||LTD Espresso||Lightning||Unable to find merchant history.||4.50||4.50|
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|20||17 Sep 19 20:51||Fat Dumpling||Lightning||lnbc414190...8hcpg79h9a||61.20||319.90|
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|22||17 Sep 19 20:58||The Stand Desserts||Bitcoin||17MrHiRcKz...ZxydX8raU9||28.00||349.90|
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submitted by freespinsgaming to u/freespinsgaming [link] [comments]
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This article was first posted on Medium: https://medium.com/swlh/blockchain-in-insurance-use-cases-and-implementations-a42a00ebcd91submitted by BlockDotCo to u/BlockDotCo [link] [comments]
Almost all major insurers are planning to integrate blockchain by 2021, according to PwC. At first glance, such a high level of commitment to new tech may seem surprising in an old and traditional industry such as insurance. However, enterprise blockchain adoption is poised to help insurers significantly cut costs, become more responsive to customers, and write more business.
Two recurring themes throughout this post are that:
Insurance Growth Rates (CAGR) 2012–17. Source: EY
A recent EY insurance market report showed low growth rates for Life insurance and Non-Life insurance outside Asia Pacific. Digging deeper, Life insurance premiums in the US declined by 0.4% from 2012–17.
Insurers find themselves needing to reduce operating costs and write business more effectively. While blockchain is not a magic elixir, proper adoption will help address these needs.
What is Blockchain?In their book “Blockchain Revolution,” authors Don and Alex Tapscott describe blockchain as “an incorruptible digital ledger of economic transactions that can be programmed to record not just financial transactions but virtually everything of value.”
Organizations need secure ways to record transactions and manage information flows, making blockchain’s appeal easy to see. Blockchains ensures that:
Enterprise blockchains have the following characteristics:
Blockchain Use Cases in InsuranceIndustries have always adopted technology that has made it easier, faster and cheaper to conduct business. Blockchain tech promises to deliver on all three fronts, especially in the insurance industry, which is seen as slow and complex.
Let’s face it, insurance customers don’t enjoy interacting with insurance companies. Customers often deal with time-consuming paper forms when applying for a policy or submitting a claim. They may have to speak with people at insurance companies and hospitals, for example, to get medical insurance claims reimbursed.
On the flip side, insurance companies have to deal with the high costs of managing and servicing policies. Many of these costs are administrative — claims administration, verification and reconciliation of information, and paperwork. Insurance also requires coordination among many parties — consumers, brokers, insurers and reinsurers. This introduces overhead costs that translate to higher premiums paid by customers.
Blockchain can help make selling and servicing insurance better, faster and cheaper by improving fraud prevention, claims management, health insurance, and reinsurance. The end result could be lower prices and better experiences for customers.
Fraud PreventionAccording to the FBI, non-health insurance fraud in the US is estimated to be over $40 billion per year, which can cost families between $400–700 per year in extra premiums.
Common types of insurance fraud can be eliminated by moving insurance claims onto a blockchain-based ledger that is shared among insurance companies and cannot be modified. It can prevent criminals from collecting money from different insurers for the same claim, for example.
Blockchain will make coordination easier among insurers. If all insurers access a shared blockchain ledger, they would know if a claim has already been paid. Since all insurers use the same historical claims information, it would also be easier to identify suspicious behavior.
Insurers currently try to detect fraud by using publicly available data as well as data acquired from private companies. The problem is that these data sets are incomplete due to legal constraints around sharing personally identifiable information of individuals. Blockchain, by cryptographically securing data, would allow claims information to be shared across insurers without divulging personally identifiable information.
Claims ManagementPutting insurance policies on a blockchain as smart contracts can radically improve the efficiency of Property & Casualty (P&C) insurance, saving insurers more than $200B a year in operating costs according to BCG.
Let’s use car insurance to illustrate this. If you get into a car accident and it was the other driver’s fault, you must submit a claim to your insurance company to recover your loss. Your insurance company investigates your claim and tries to recover money from the other driver’s insurance company. The other insurance company has its own claims processes, which leads to duplicated work, delays, and possible human error. The end result is that you get paid much later than you’d like, and insurers spend time and money on unprofitable activities.
Putting insurance policies and claims data on a blockchain that different insurers, reinsurers, brokers, and other parties can access reduces duplicate manual work by different parties.
Insurance policies as smart contracts on a blockchain automatically execute programmed claims processing actions, automating information transfers between insurers and other parties, and releasing payments to policyholders. Additional info such as claims forms and supporting evidence supplied by policyholders can later be added to the blockchain so that all parties have the same information, making disputes unlikely.
Health InsuranceBlockchain enables fast, accurate, and secure sharing of medical data among healthcare providers and insurers. This will translate into faster health insurance claims processing and lower health insurance costs for customers.
Privacy laws around sharing patient data among hospitals and health insurance providers makes it time-consuming and expensive to process health insurance claims. Lack of data can even lead to insurance claim denials.
Patients deal with numerous doctors, hospitals and insurers over time and across borders. A patient’s medical history exists in fragments across healthcare providers and insurers. Worse, the way in which insurers and healthcare providers cooperate, share patient data, and process claims involves complex manual work & reconciliation. Even the technical infrastructure for medical records is outdated.
Putting encrypted patient records on a blockchain allows healthcare providers and insurers to access a patient’s medical data without sacrificing patient confidentiality. An industry-wide synchronized database of patient data can save the industry billions annually. Patient privacy is ensured because the blockchain stores cryptographic signatures for each medical record, which verifies the authenticity of the record without having to actually store any sensitive info on the blockchain. Changes to a patient’s medical records are also stored on the blockchain, which creates an audit trail.
ReinsuranceData sharing among insurers and reinsurance companies is complex, time consuming, and requires inefficient manual work. Blockchain can streamline information flows between insurers and reinsurers.
Reinsurers provide insurance to insurance companies. That way, insurance companies won’t get wiped out when many claims occur at once, such as during a hurricane or earthquake.
The problem is that reinsurance processes are lengthy, inefficient, manual and are based on one-off contracts. Insurance companies generally engage multiple reinsurers for the same risk, which means that data has to be shared among many companies to settle claims.
When reinsurers and insurers share a blockchain ledger, data related to policies, premiums and losses can exist on insurers’ and reinsurers’ systems simultaneously. This takes away the need for reconciliation, which saves everyone time and money. Reinsurers can also automate claims processing and settlement.
PricewaterhouseCoopers estimates that blockchain can save the reinsurance industry up to $10 billion, which can then lead to lower insurance premiums for customers.
Blockchain Implementation in InsuranceSaving the best for last, here are just some examples of how the insurance industry is using blockchain. Keep in mind that at this point, there are more prototypes and POCs than full-scale implementations.
R3R3 is an enterprise blockchain company. It maintains an ecosystem of over 300 firms across industries that build blockchain software apps on top of its Corda platform. These apps can be used across industries from insurance to banking to healthcare. R3 maintains 2 versions of Corda; an open source platform and an enterprise-specific version called Corda Enterprise. Both versions of Corda are compatible with each other.
Insurance-specific applications on Corda are designed to help insurers automate back office activities, streamline operational flows, and generally spend less time on things like claims admin and data processing. There are also apps being development to speed up underwriting and enable faster data sharing among insurers and reinsurers.
Basically, Corda wants to host a common set of insurance apps that the entire industry can use to cut costs and boost revenue. Corda currently boasts over 15 insurance-specific apps, with a few of these deployed into production such as:
B3iB3i was a blockchain consortium, now an independent software company, supported by leading insurers and reinsurers including Swiss Re, AXA, Zurich, Munich Re, and Allianz. They develop blockchain-based applications for insurers and reinsurers and aim to create industry-wide standards. B3i aims to use blockchain tech to streamline back office processes and claims management — basically lower costs and do things faster. In 2018, B3i switched from IBM’s Hyperledger Fabric to R3’s Corda platform.
In July 2019, they launched a Catastrophe Excess of Loss product on Corda. The product is designed for brokers, insurers and reinsurers to negotiate and place risks more efficiently by reducing manual activities related to placing, renewing and managing treaties.
AXAIn 2017, AXA launched Fizzy, a blockchain platform for flight delay insurance. Customers purchase flight delay insurance, which is recorded in a smart contract. The platform is connected to global air traffic databases and receives flight statuses. If a customer’s flight is delayed for more than two hours, the smart contract automatically triggers payment to the customer.
Customers don’t have to fill out claims forms or speak to service reps. The claim is deposited directly to their bank account. Customer satisfaction: maximized.
AXA does not have to spend time processing claims, verifying flight data, or enduring paperwork for payment authorizations. They save on time & cost and can deploy these resources to more profitable activities.
Update: Fizzy has since been discontinued after 2 years, possibly due to lack of appetite from the travel/airline industry. Regardless, Fizzy was a pioneer of sorts and has laid the groundwork for future blockchain insurance platforms.
Blue CrossHong Kong insurer Blue Cross is using blockchain since April 2019 to speed up medical insurance claims processing and prevent fraud.
Blue Cross’ blockchain platform validates claims data in real-time, which greatly reduces fraud potential from duplicate claims filing, for example. Claims are also processed faster for their 200,000+ customers. The platform also removes the need to reconcile claims data across parties such as insurers and medical service providers. Medical practitioners such as doctors and chiropractors who don’t employ many admin support staff could save time and money by partnering with Blue Cross.
Blue Cross’ blockchain platform is built on Hyperledger. Blue Cross is owned by Bank of East Asia.
InsurwaveInsurwave is a blockchain-based marine hull insurance platform launched in 2018. The platform was a collaboration among Ernst & Young, Guardtime, Maersk, Microsoft, and ACORD. It was built on R3’s Corda platform.
Insurwave provides real-time information on ships’ location, condition, and safety factors that both insurers and customers can access. If ships enter high-risk areas, Insurwave automatically factors this into underwriting and pricing calculations.
Premium calculations for this type of insurance are very complex. Having an immutable audit trail for ship-specific information substantially eases this calculation, enables accurate pricing, and speeds up underwriting. Insurers are also able to better account for ship-specific risks.
The Future of Blockchain in InsuranceThese are still early days. Most of the work around blockchain in insurance is in the Proof of Concept stage and regulation is slowly catching up. However, we have already seen some applications that have gone live.
The ‘quickest win’ for blockchain in insurance is in the area of cost control. Rising costs are hitting insurers across most markets. Blockchain platforms and Dapps that allow firms to free up resources by automating claims management, fraud detection and data reconciliation, for example, will be heartily endorsed by executives.
The real win will be when blockchain platforms enable insurers to create better products and onboard customers faster — things that bring in revenue. For this to happen, we need a more robust ecosystem of insurers, reinsurers, tech companies and service providers working together on industry-standard blockchain platforms.
This has already started with software companies like R3 launching enterprise-grade blockchain platforms such as Corda Enterprise. We also have leading insurers involved in B3i that share common goals related to blockchain development. It remains to be seen if these natural competitors share enough long-term interests to sustain the initiative. If not, industry-wide blockchain adoption may take longer and become more fragmented.
However, the benefits are too obvious to ignore. We will probably see a few committed companies invest early in blockchain and enjoy a short period of above-normal performance, with early adoption coming from mature markets burdened with high costs as well as some parts of Southeast Asia (e.g. China, which proactively adopts tech). The rest of the industry will follow.
Bitcoin is attracting the attention of an increasing number of both investors and ordinary people. Many years have passed since the birth of the first cryptocurrency but there are still a lot of rumors surrounding it.submitted by Stealthex_io to u/Stealthex_io [link] [comments]
In this article, we will try to dispel the most popular myths about Bitcoin and shed light on reality. So let’s roll!
Everyone can “print” Bitcoins, so they are uselessNowadays the complexity of Bitcoin mining is too high and moreover it is constantly increasing.
As known, Bitcoins are mined in blocks and the reward for each block is halved after every 210 thousand blocks produced. And if in 2009 the reward for the block was 50 BTC, now it is only 6, 25 BTC, and this reward will continue to decrease.
Due to the innovation in mining equipment, the total network performance has increased many times along with the complexity. At the moment, a standard PC is not able to provide the necessary computing power for mining digital gold. For profitable mining, huge investments required which measured in hundreds of thousands and millions of USD.
The value of Bitcoin is determined not by the fact that it can be minted by everyone, but by whether this currency will be used by people in everyday life.
BTC is used to buy drugs and money launderingIllegal activities exist much longer than Bitcoin. Yes, it is possible to buy drugs for BTC as it is also possible to do so using the American dollar, Nigerian naira, or Thai baht. Bitcoin is just a means of payment. So blaming the tool for how it is being used is not right.
It is also worth mentioning that in the blockchain each transaction is public, which is not very convenient for illegal activities. It is believed that only 1-5% of all BTC transactions are used for money laundering. Of course, there is no consensus on this issue.
Using Bitcoin is not safe, exchanges are constantly being hackedHeadlines announcing that another major cryptocurrency exchange was hacked could scare away anyone from the crypto industry. However, Bitcoin network has never been hacked.
The technology that was created by Satoshi Nakamoto is safer than any bank in the world. So rogues are unlikely could withdraw coins from hardware wallet even with physical access to it. Bitcoin cannot be falsified: the issue of new coins occurs according to a strictly predefined schedule, which cannot be violated.
But the situation with storing currency on exchanges is a real problem. Unfortunately, hackers remain the key enemy for the crypto community. So please be extremely careful when considering options where to store your savings.
Bitcoin is a pyramid schemeBitcoin value has risen 15 times in 2017 so no wonder that many people think that BTC is just another soap-bubble or Ponzi scheme.
But how does Ponzi scheme work? Existing investors profit from new entrants. However, there is no objective increase in the value of investments. In addition, a creator of the pyramid ultimately derives maximum benefit for itself.
All this has nothing to do with Bitcoin technology. Because there is no regulatory center interested in income generation and all the users are equal. And each transaction, each wallet is part of one huge system. The other important Bitcoin difference from the classical pyramid is that as the number of BTC holders increase the value of currency grows. But the profit of users doesn’t rise exponentially.
You should remember that Ponzi’s schemes exist in any currency. The Bitcoin technology should not be confused with various scam projects on the Internet that can accept this digital currency as deposits. And very often people who are being scammed in such suspicious projects blame the technology itself and not those who had deceived them.
Bitcoin has no valueIn comparison with traditional assets like Dollars or Euros, Bitcoin is just a piece of program code. Cryptocurrency owners can only see some numbers in their digital wallets. But how real is their savings? Bitcoin is not backed with gold or government obligations. That’s why Bitcoin critics dismiss its value.
Saying that BTC is not backed with anything is not entirely true. But first let’s figure out how traditional currencies are backed.
After the suspension of the gold standard, most of the currency in the global economy is not backed by either precious metals or foreign exchange reserves. Moreover, many national currencies don’t have commodity collateral: currency issued doesn’t cover the value of goods produced in the country.
But then what is the source of currency credence? The answer is simple – government. As long as the nation-state supports the currency – people trust in it. But if the government can’t or doesn’t want to maintain this trust any longer – the currency fall.
So currency has value as long as people believe in it.
The source of confidence in BTC is in its own intrinsic value that brings this digital currency truly golden. Because the real value of Bitcoin is financial freedom.
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Original article was posted on https://stealthex.io/blog/2020/06/02/myths-facts-on-bitcoin/
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