Libra Launch Won’t Happen Until Regulators are Happy: Coeure 16608


Global regulators will not let Facebook launch its Libra currency until all their concerns, ranging from money laundering to financial stability, have been addressed and “a prolonged discussion” may be needed first, the man in charge of their response told Reuters. Facebook announced Libra — a new digital coin backed by four official currencies and available to billions of social network users around the world — a month ago, adding that it was hoping to launch as soon as next year.

Benoit Coeure, the European Central Bank board member who chairs an international working group on Libra, said Facebook’s global reach meant the cryptocurrency had to be safe “from day one” for its users, the financial system and authorities fighting crime.

“You’ve got to be safe, robust and resilient from day one,” Coeure said in an interview on the sidelines of a Group of Seven meeting in Chantilly, France. “It’s not a learning process: either it works or it doesn’t.”

Regulators fear Libra, which in its original design would let users transfer money using a pseudonym, may be used to launder money or finance terrorism. They also want to know what safeguards Facebook and the other 27 members of the Libra Association have in place to ensure they could withstand a run on reserves and that users’ privacy and ownership rights are protected.

This may involve a “prolonged discussion” among regulators on how to change existing national and international rules to cover Libra, Coeure said.

“Down the road we might find that there are gaps or inconsistencies that would require a prolonged discussion by regulators on how to do it differently,” he said.

“Authorities are not going to let any such projects happen before we have answers to our questions and before we have the right regulatory framework.”

Cryptocurrencies are subject to patchy rules across the world, with the technology remaining mostly unregulated. While some smaller countries, from Belarus to Malta, have brought in specific laws, major economies have tended to apply existing financial rules.

Coeure said his G7 working group on stablecoins will work on the matter until the International Monetary Fund’s annual meeting in October, when it will hand it over to the Financial Stability Board of global financial regulators. Facebook said earlier this week it would not proceed with the launch of Libra until regulatory concerns are addressed.

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‘4IR: AI, Blockchain, Fintech, IoT – Reinventing a Nation’ Book by Dinis Guarda and Rais Hussin 13477

Ztudium, Dinis Guarda and Dr. Rais Hussin, leading global voices in strategy and research, analyze how future digital tech can be used by developing nations in the publication of a new book titled “4IR: AI, Blockchain, Fintech – Reinventing a Nation.”

The Fourth Industrial Revolution – 4IR – and all the emerging technologies are part of this concept, disrupting the world as we know it, particularly affecting nations and businesses that need to adapt quickly to avoid being left behind.

“4IR: AI, Blockchain, Fintech – Reinventing a Nation” offers insights into the present and future of the 4IR and how the associated variety of evolving technologies can and will have a significant impact on economies and societies. The book challenges nations to prepare for 4IR, asking them to focus on the needs of their society, leading to a future of sustainable, mindful economic growth on a global field, and how this, if rightly utilized, might contribute to a better world where nations are seen as collaborators rather than adversaries.

The book assembles an array of thought leaders who all contributed research to the book and is a testament to the impressive global network that Dinis Guarda has built during his 25-year career. The list of contributors includes a foreword by Eric Van der Kleij – the founder of London TechCity and Level 39, Emmanuel Daniel, founder of Asian Banker, Guenther Dobrauz Saldapenna, author and Director at PWC, Yoshiyuki Yamamoto, advisor to the UN, Efi Pylarinou, influencer in fintech, Thomas Power, global authority in social media and tech, Maria Fonseca, Anca Petre, Dr. Margarita Peredaryenko, Hernaldo Turrillo and Javed Khattak.

The book highlights the technologies of AI, Blockchain, Fintech, and IoT, which are at the core of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. It discusses the risks and threats and explores how we can best harness the opportunities, strengths, and potential of these technology tools for the future advancement of countries and their citizens.

About The Authors

Dinis Guarda is an author, speaker, entrepreneur, advisor and CEO. Dinis is the author of the books “How Businesses and Governments can prosper with Fintech, Blockchain, and AI?”, “Blockchain, AI and Crypto Economics – The Next Tsunami” among others. He is listed in various global fintech, blockchain, AI, social media industry lists as a top influencer. Dinis is the founder of ztudium, which manages blocksdna,,, fashionabc.

Dr. Rais Hussin is a strategist, perennial wordsmith, social engineer, entrepreneur, and serious policy intellectual. He is the President/CEO of EMIR Research, which specializes in data-driven research on national or international issues. Dr. Rais also serves as Co-Chairman of Deutsche Malaysia Ventures, which he co-founded to promote inbound investment, technology, and execution for high-tech, high-value projects in Malaysia and the exciting growth markets of the ASEAN economic zone.

New York Times Profiles Voatz 12014

Voatz is honored to be featured in The New York Times this morning in a story written by Pulitzer Prize winning reporter, Matthew Rosenberg. The story identifies Voatz as the first and only voting app available for consideration by election officials to explore additional technology for better voting access. This attention is especially significant for Voatz as a young company that has spent five years building and piloting a voting platform that first and foremost offers better accessibility, security and resilience when compared to any of the existing options available to those whose circumstances make it difficult to vote in person. This includes our overseas military servicemen and women and those with disabilities.

Background Context

We are often the subject of doubt, and new technologies are frequently the target of skeptics. A group of researchers, in an effort to trigger a media campaign geared to systematically disrupt a live election process, contacted The New York Times with allegations of vulnerabilities in our system. This effort resulted in a story.
After receiving and reviewing the full report, Voatz concluded that the report is fundamentally flawed, as detailed by our analysis below. Most telling, the foundation of the research is based on an Android version of the Voatz mobile voting app that was at least 27 versions old at the time of analysis. We highlight the flaws within the research and expose the agenda of the researchers below, which is aimed to thwart the process of innovation and progress for better voting access.

Voatz Analysis & Response to Researchers’ Flawed Report
Voatz wishes to acknowledge the enormous effort it must have taken for the team of researchers, two student researchers at MIT with Daniel Witzner, founder of MIT’s Internet Policy Research Initiative, to produce “The Ballot is Busted Before the Blockchain: A Security Analysis of Voatz, the First Internet Voting Application Used in U.S.”

Our review of their report found three fundamental flaws with their method of analysis, their untested claims, and their bad faith recommendations.

First, the researchers were analyzing an Android version of the Voatz mobile voting app that was at least 27 versions old at the time of their disclosure and never used in an election. Had the researchers taken the time, like nearly 100 other researchers, to test and verify their claims using the latest version of our platform via our public bug bounty program on HackerOne, they would not have ended up producing a report that asserts claims on the basis of an erroneous method.

Second, as the researchers admitted, the outdated app was never connected to the Voatz servers, which are hosted on Amazon AWS and Microsoft Azure. This means that they were unable to register, unable to pass the layers of identity checks to impersonate a legitimate voter, unable to receive a legitimate ballot and unable to submit any legitimate votes or change any voter data.

Third, in the absence of trying to access the Voatz servers, the researchers fabricated an imagined version of the Voatz servers, hypothesized how they worked, and then made assumptions about the interactions between the system components that are simply false. This flawed approach invalidates any claims about their ability to compromise the overall system. In short, to make claims about a backend server without any evidence or connection to the server negates any degree of credibility on behalf of the researchers.

The researchers have labeled Voatz as “not transparent”. With qualified, collaborative researchers we are very open; we disclose source code and hold lengthy interactive sessions with their architects and engineers. We educate them on the critical demands of election security; they give us feedback and educate us on new best practices based on their practical knowledge of security drawn from other industries.

Voatz has worked for nearly five years to develop a resilient ballot marking system, a system built to respond to unanticipated threats and to distribute updates worldwide with short notice. It incorporates solutions from other industries to address issues around security, identity, accessibility, and auditability.

We want to be clear that all nine of our governmental pilot elections conducted to date, involving less than 600 voters, have been conducted safely and securely with no reported issues. Pilot programs like ours are invaluable. They educate all election stakeholders and push innovation forward in a responsible, transparent way. For nearly two decades, the researchers and the community to which they belong have waged a systematic effort to dismantle any online voting pilots. These attempts effectively choke any meaningful conversation and learnings around the safe integration of technology to improve accessibility and security in our elections. The effect is to deny access to our overseas citizens, deployed military service men and women, their families, and citizens with disabilities.

It is clear that from the theoretical nature of the researchers’ approach, the lack of practical evidence backing their claims, their deliberate attempt to remain anonymous, and their priority being to find media attention, that the researchers’ true aim is to deliberately disrupt the election process, to sow doubt in the security of our election infrastructure, and to spread fear and confusion.

The reality is that continuing our mobile voting pilots holds the best promise to improve accessibility, security and resilience when compared to any of the existing options available to those whose circumstances make it difficult to vote.

About Voatz
Voatz is an award-winning mobile elections platform that leverages cutting-edge technology (including biometrics and a blockchain-based infrastructure) to increase access and security in elections. Since 2016 Voatz has run more than 50 elections with cities, universities, towns, nonprofits, and both major state political parties for convention voting. In 2018 Voatz partnered with West Virginia to empower deployed military and overseas citizens to vote, marking the first mobile votes in U.S. history. In 2019 Voatz expanded its pilots to Denver, Utah, Oregon and Washington, all of which held citizen’s public-facing audits, hosted by the National Cybersecurity Center. All pilots increased turnout and in the case of Denver, 100% of voters responding to a post-election survey said they preferred this method of voting to any other.

BitDegree to Compete for 1M EUR in the Finals of EIC Horizon Prize for Blockchains for Social Good 14807

BitDegree Scholarships’ solution was selected to appear among the 23 finalists in Brussels and will compete for a 1M EUR prize in the category “Aid & Philanthropy.” BitDegree has developed the first-ever transparent P2P blockchain system for scholarships tied to educational outcomes. Now, anyone can get paid to learn at

The EIC Horizon Prize ‘Blockchains for Social Good’ focuses on scalable, efficient, and high-impact decentralized solutions to social innovation challenges using blockchain technology. The task requires multidisciplinary expertise. Winning solutions are expected to address sustainability challenges, generate social change, and demonstrate options for a smoother distribution of information and resources.

Bringing complete transparency to education donations

BitDegree Scholarships disrupts the general belief that donations and aid deviate from the end-recipients. The solution presents individual stories for donors to see and fund easily. People can request financial support to access high-quality online courses and compensate for their time away from work.

Blockchain technology underwriting the Scholarships allows complete financial transparency and educational achievement. If the person completes the course in time, a blockchain certificate is issued and the incentive scholarship is transferred in cryptocurrency, allowing to break the financial barriers and reach the unbanked. Otherwise, the donation is returned to the sponsor, as defined in the smart contract.

Social good potential of P2P scholarships

The Internet allows everyone to reach quality education. However, there can be two obstacles to learning. First, high-quality online courses can be for someone with a lower income. Second, people can’t afford the time to learn, as they need to work. BitDegree Scholarships solve the issue by paying for online courses and providing a local-income-adjusted grant to buy time for learning. People in need can re-skill and up-skill online to work in the global economy or find qualified employment locally.

BitDegree Scholarships spans over developing and developed countries equally. Europe lacks tech talent, and the automation of industry threatens the employment of many. Employer or government-sponsored scholarships tied to clear learning paths can enable and motivate the wide-scale reskilling in Europe.

BitDegree Scholarships open to any education provider

For demonstration, BitDegree has implemented the BitDegree Scholarships system on its platform as a Showcase. The vision is to attract many different online and offline education providers to use BitDegree Scholarships and enable their learners to receive support. Interested parties can already do so manually. The next version of Scholarships will offer automated integrations with third parties and a joint listing of all scholarship requests for donors.

The incentive to go beyond state-of-the-art

In education, blockchain is mainly used for credentials. EIC Horizon Prize has led BitDegree to think of applying blockchain for much greater social good. The company appreciates the ability to network with like-minded leaders sharing common global-scale goals. Winning the prize, BitDegree will use the funds to develop the project further.

‘Blockchain game leader’ SuperTree, closes 3 billion won in investment to expand service and IP 14184

Leading Blockchain Game Development company, SuperTree Co. Ltd, (SuperTree, CEO Choi Sungwone) announced on the 21st that it has successfully attracted a total of 3 billion won in Series A investment. SuperTree is a startup specializing in the development of Blockchain games, consisting of a core team with significant experience in the gaming industry such as NHN, Netmarble, NCSOFT and ItemBay.

The investment involved two large venture capital firms, Korea Investment Partners, the country’s largest venture capital, and SBI Investment Korea. The investment will be used to secure IPs for popular games and develop technologies for blockchain gaming, while focusing on upgrading the development of Blockchain game service platform PlayDapp.

SuperTree is a main player in developing successful global popular dApp games, CryptoDozer and DozerBird, both of which were launched in the Samsung blockchain Wallet last year and introduced at SDC19 (Samsung Developer Conference) in the U.S. The company is currently developing a game tournament platform called “PlayDapp,” which enables real-time competition, as well as C2C Market Place, which allows users to directly trade items on a blockchain.

SBI Investment Korea Director Lee Joo-hyuk said, “It is expected that the game industry’s use of blockchain technology will become active around the world. In fact, Ripple, which ranks third in the market value of cryptocurrency in March last year, raised $100 million to accelerate the adoption of blockchain in the blockchain game platform Forte (CEO Kevin Chu) and the game industry. “We are expecting the value of dApp and the blockchain game service platform ‘PlayDapp’ which SuperTree is developing to increase further,” he said.

“Through this investment, we are planning to increase the level of development of C2C marketplaces and tournaments that are under development and to reach commercialization soon after going through verification at home and abroad,” said Choi Sungwone, CEO of SuperTree. “Based on our experience in the game industry over the past 20 years, we will grow into a global NO.1 company that leads the industry with differentiated competitiveness and exceptional execution.”

SBI Investment and Korea Investment Partners, which decided on the investment, have been making successful investments in Korea’s largest venture capital, healthcare, IT, mobile, B2C, content and blockchain, respectively, established in 1986 and 2003.

Sensorium to Reveal Ground Breaking Future at Davos 13652

Speakers from Sensorium Corporation, a company that is redefining social media and virtual reality experiences, are set to share invaluable market insight and future predictions during presentations at the 4th Annual Blockchain Central Davos event, hosted by Global Blockchain Business Council (GBBC) and taking place between January 20 and 24 at Davos Switzerland. The Blockchain Central Davos event brings together leading voices in blockchain technologies to share learning and create unmatched opportunities for innovators and GBBC members, to collaborate with policymakers and business leaders from around the world.

Alexey Blagirev, Digital and Investor Relations Director, Sensorium Corporation will focus on how sweeping digital changes are transforming society in his presentation ‘The Digitization of Everything.’ Nikita Bokarev, Chief Marketing Officer, Sensorium Corporation will reveal the transformational impact new social-based networks are set have during his ‘Blockchain, AR, VR – How New Tech is Transforming the Media Landscape’ presentation.

During his presentation, which takes place on the 22nd at 18.00, Blagirev will explain how Sensorium is redefining digital space by creating 3D virtual world environments in which thousands of people can participate at any one time. “This is an evolutionary and revolutionary step which alters our perception of digital experiences,” he said, adding, “Within the Sensorium Universe iconic events such as music concerts and famous nightclub scenes are broadcast live and in 3D into the digital universe, eliminating physical and geographical barriers in an instant.”

Bokarev will focus on how the evolution of social networks and new technologies such as social virtual reality are creating brave new 3D digital worlds. He said: “Today’s social networks will gradually move to the 3D virtual space because of the communal experience it provides. Friends can come together, and using Social VR tools, collectively participate in a 3D virtual events in real-time and visit new virtual spaces.” Bokarev’s presentation takes place on the 23rd at 19.30.

Both Blagirev and Bokarev are also giving a special virtual reality demo and overview of the Sensorium Galaxy so attendees can gain a first-hand view of the unique experiences provided. This demo takes place on the 23rd at 20.30. Following the special virtual reality demo there will be a concert performance by Matt Sorum, former drummer with the iconic Guns N’ Roses.

About Sensorium Galaxy
Sensorium is the world’s first global social VR media platform created in collaboration with acclaimed artists, visionaries and entertainment entities. Sensorium provides the one-stop destination for multi-user immersion into entertainment experiences and self-discovery through its experiential worlds.Sensorium provides the one-stop destination for multi-user immersion into entertainment experiences and self-discovery through its experiential worlds.Sensorium Galaxy begins its expansion with the Music Planet, first virtual worlds of which are implemented in collaborations with some of the leading representatives of international music scene.

About Sensorium Corporation
Sensorium Corporation is a technology company that creates digital simulations of real-world venues and virtual worlds in cooperation with its content partners – globally recognized concert venues, clubs and festivals. For more information, visit

About Global Blockchain Business Council (GBBC)
The Global Blockchain Business Council (GBBC) is the leading industry association for the blockchain technology ecosystem. Conceived on Sir Richard Branson’s Necker Island, the GBBC is a Swiss-based non-profit launched in 2017 in Davos, Switzerland. The organization brings together innovators and thought-leaders from over 50 countries to further adoption of blockchain technology by engaging and educating regulators, business leaders, and lawmakers on how to harness this groundbreaking technology to create more secure, equitable, and functional societies.

2020 is the Year SMBs Invade ERP, According to ERP Advisors Group Annual Report 13835

If there was a theme for 2019, it was the year cloud-based ERP finally arrived. No longer a novelty, cloud ERP is the new normal, the “big deal” — the baseline paradigm.

But if 2019 was big, 2020 will be small … and medium. For the ERP Advisors Group Annual Report on the State of ERP, Shawn Windle sat down for a video interview to reflect on ERP trends from the past year and discuss why 2020 is the year the SMBs invade ERP.

“With robotic process automation, artificial intelligence and blockchain technology, all of these factors are converging to make investing in technology make a ton of sense,” said Windle. “In 2020, you’re going to have a ton of great options for software. It’s going to be the year where, if you’ve been on the fence, waiting to see if the cloud is for real — it’s for real.”

Windle noted that advances in ERP systems are allowing vendors to be more agile with industry-specific solutions. “Large vendors that focus on bigger companies like Workday or Oracle are moving downmarket,” he said. “And the companies that have traditionally focused on smaller businesses are going upmarket. Your options for software are going to be awesome in 2020.”

“There are several organizations that build apps on top of their platform so that, almost overnight, they can come in with an industry-specific solution for a micro-vertical,” said Windle.

Here are the three biggest ERP trends for 2020:

1. Companies and organizations of all kinds are investing in software. And that includes everyone from gigantic government agencies to emerging startups.

2. Industry-specific solutions are dominating their respective fields. The deployment cost of bringing new applications to market is lower than ever, meeting the needs of the most demanding micro-verticals.

3. ERP implementation partners are coming of age. They are meeting the challenge of understanding your business, the product, the technology, the configuration, and the customization you need.

The biggest prediction for ERP in 2020:

2020 will be the year of SMBs — the year that ERP for small and midsize businesses will finally become a cost-effective reality. For SMBs with an annual revenue between $50 million and $500 million, the number of ERP software options available in 2020 will be astounding.

ERP Advisors Group has helped over a thousand organizations become successful with their enterprise software initiatives. Because they remain technology-independent at all costs, ERP Advisors Group is becoming known as the world’s most trusted enterprise software advisory firm.