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Industry roundup: 23 February

Digital transformation of payments to the cloud provided by Thales’ new solution offering

Thales, a France-based global technology enterprise, announced that its payShield 10K technology will help deliver the Microsoft Azure Payment Hardware Security Module (HSM), an innovative infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) that provides cryptographic key operations to protect critical real-time payment transactions in Azure. The integration of Thales payShield 10K with Microsoft Azure Payment HSM helps financial institutions and service providers accelerate the digital transformation of cloud-based payment solutions, enabling a wide range of uses, including payment processing, payment credential issuing, protecting keys and authentication data, and sensitive data protection. Todd Moore, Vice President of Encryption Products, Thales, commented that “integrating Thales’ payment HSM technology offers financial institutions the same highest levels of payment application security, but with compelling new features, including scalability, consumption based pricing and remote management.”

Some of the benefits for users of payments HSMs with on-premises HSMs and new entrants to the payment ecosystem who opt for a cloud-native approach include:

  • Improved security and compliance: The Azure Payment HSM solution can be deployed as part of a validated PCI P2PE/PCI PIN component or solution to help simplify compliance with ongoing security audits. Thales’ payShield 10K HSM is FIPS 140-2 Level 3 and PCI HSM v3 certified.
  • Client-management HSM in Azure: The Azure Payment HSM is part of a subscription service that offers single-tenant HSMs and total customer control in addition to exclusive access to the HSM. Once the HSM is allocated, Microsoft will not have access to customer data information. Similarly, when the HSM is no longer needed, customer data will be deleted.
  • Remote management of payShield HSMs: Users of the service will utilize Thales payShield Manager for secure remote access to the HSMs as part of their service. Multiple subscription options are available to meet a wide range of performance and application needs, enabling fast upgrades in line with end-user business growth.

Challenger bank FV Bank launches first API to automate payment data to clients

FV Bank, a global digital bank provider of digital asset banking and custody services in the United States, has launched the first application programming interface (API) to drive automation and integration of client operations. With the API capability, enterprises can grow their operations by automating their data flow and its payment systems. The API uses FVNet, FV Bank’s framework, to streamline payments such as ACH, domestic, international and internal transfers. Compliance functions, such as sanctions screenings to ensure anti-money laundering compliance, operate in the background automatically.

According to FV Bank, the new API will provide real-time notifications for incoming and outgoing payment and transactions, providing an improved experience for enterprises and their customers. Additionally, the API facilitates the immediate transfer of funds to the customer’s FV Bank account, enables real-time payments between accounts, and includes account balance and transaction history information. Clients will also be able to integrate banking solutions into their own fintech and blockchain applications. Integration with FVBank's digital asset escrow and storage services will be released in future API versions. Miles Paschini, co-founder and CEO, FV Bank, commented that the purpose of the new API solution is to provide the bank's regulatory and compliance capabilities in a vertically integrated manner and to provide innovative technical solutions directly to customers.

Nedbank South Africa goes digital, wiping out legacy bank systems using ACI Worldwide’s innovative solutions

A global provider of mission-critical real-time payment software, ACI Worldwide, partners with Nedbank, a financial services provider in South Africa, to advance its digital transformation journey with real-time payments and more. A comprehensive modernization program is underway at Nedbank to migrate all of its legacy systems to ACI's award-winning ACI Enterprise Payments Platform, including the transition to ISO 20022, the global financial messaging standard.

Nedbank provides wholesale and retail banking services, in addition to insurance, asset and wealth management. The primary market is South Africa, with operations in Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia and Zimbabwe through its subsidiaries and banks. The ACI Enterprise Payments Platform, an end-to-end payments hub solution for retail and wholesale payments, includes all the features of ACI Issuing, ACI High-Value Real-Time Payments, ACI Low-Value Real-Time Payments, ACI Acquiring and ACI Fraud Management. Additionally, this solution enables banks to “future-proof” their payments processes and meet new customer requirements for all payment types (consumer, merchant and corporate payments). Nedbank will also deploy ACI's enterprise fraud management and prevention solution, ACI Fraud Management, to protect customers from increasing fraud attacks. This solution provides advanced machine learning, behavioural biometrics, predictive analytics and expert-defined rules to help banks detect and mitigate financial crimes.

Marijke Guest, Group Technology Division Executive, Enterprise Payments, Nedbank, commented that the migration from legacy systems to ACI’s payment platform will enable them to provide new payment methods quickly, reduce total cost of ownership (TCO), increase the speed of innovation and compete in the financial landscape effectively.

Regulatory action steps by GIABA states to combat money laundering and terrorist financing

Inter-Governmental Action Group (GIABA), an agency of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), is focused on combating against money laundering and financing of terrorism in West Africa, in addition to the task of mutual evaluations in implementing recommendations of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) on money laundering.

Ghana was successfully removed from the FATF's Anti-Money Laundering / Terrorism Financing Grey-List. Nine other GIABA member states (including Nigeria, Niger, Burkina Faso, Sierra Leone, Cape Verde, Benin and Senegal) have also been successful passing the second round of mutual evaluation exercises using adopted and published reports by seventeen member countries of the subregion.

It is estimated that Africa can lose significant resources due to illicit financial flows (IFF). These flows come from multiple sources, including income from illegal activities, tax avoidance, abusive profit-shifting, trade mis-invoicing and corruption. The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development states that Africa can realize US $ 89 billion annually by restricting illegal financial flows such as money laundering and terrorist financing.

The recommendations by the FATF include:

  • Ratify and implement UN instruments,
  • Outlaw the financing of terrorism and associated money laundering,
  • Freeze and confiscate terrorist assets,
  • Report suspicious transactions related to terrorism,
  • Monitor, with international cooperation, alternative remittances, wire transfers and organizations’ non-profit activities.

GIABA, consisting of the Comoros Union and the Democratic Republic of Sao Tome and Principe, in addition to 15 ECOWAS members, works with the FATF detailed country evaluation reports and analyses the implementation and effectiveness of procedures to prevent money laundering and terrorist financing. Evaluations are performed by members from different countries and observed by the FATF, GIABA member-states, and regional and international organizations.

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