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FINANCIAL CHRONICLE™ » DAILY CHRONICLE™ » Bitcoins – the future of banking

Bitcoins – the future of banking

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1Bitcoins – the future of banking Empty Bitcoins – the future of banking Sun Mar 23, 2014 8:13 am


Vice President - Equity Analytics
Vice President - Equity Analytics
Chic apartments in Manhattan, a posh car and tickets for pop concerts are some of the things you can buy with Bitcoins. But what are they?

Bitcoins introduced in 2009, is the world’s biggest cryptocurrency, which is digital money. It’s the longest-standing, best-known, and most widely traded crypto currency and it’s a virtual medium of exchange, not issued by, backed by, or tied to any particular nation or government. Daya Hettiarachchi, Chairman / CEO OpenArc, says this is the future.

“Bitcoin is not a physical currency and spending takes place from one user’s virtual wallet to another user’s virtual wallet, through an exchange of public and private security keys,” he told an eminent gathering at a recent corporate CEO forum organised by OpenArc.
Bitcoin is open-source; its design is public, no one owns or rules Bitcoin and everyone can take part, he told the Business Times on the sidelines of his presentation on Bitcoins. Through many of its unique properties, Bitcoin allows exciting uses that could not be covered by any previous payment system, he added. Many say that it’s not so easy to regulate Bitcoin because there’s no central issuer or network network operator.

The virtual currency relies on a network of computers that solve complex mathematical problems as part of a process that verifies and permanently records the details of every bitcoin transaction that is made.

Cashless digital currency

Banks’ future is a cashless digital currency world, Mr. Hettiarachchi said, pointing out that this cannot be traced. “This can be used for illegal transactions. We need to be watchful and redefined our banking and finance future strategies pertaining to Bitcoins.”

He added that the Future Customer needs convenience. “They need better systems they don’t want to waste time. They want one PIN. They also operate in Multiple Banks, and possess Multiple Account types. Are we ready to face the challenge?”

This needs regulation through software, he said, adding there’s a need for a relationship between regulators and software supplies in this regard. The company launched the IPO plan to all prospective investors using OpenArc UniSETS Internet-based, unified software platform for Stock Markets and UniIPO the Internet based Initial Public Offering (IPO) management software which is a unique and pioneering product developed by OpenArc at this event. This event also saw the launch of the product UnilPO, which is one of the modules of UniSETS meant for IPO management on the Internet. “This is a pioneering product we have developed aiming at our own IPO to be managed on the Internet. Of course it will be open for any other company going public to use for their IPOs,” he said, adding OpenArc is in the process of going public. The company also launched the country’s very first, Bank Lead model of Mobile and Internet Payment platform namely, SkyPay which is an integral part of SkyBank core banking solution”. Unlike legacy systems in core banking, we have built these modern banking tools into our core banking solution. SkyMessenger is another example which is a SMS engine that generates SMS alerts within SkyBank. All finance companies may now implement a mobile payment solution to its customers using SkyPay platform and the SkySwitch switching system that will talk to new Electronic Funds Transfer system at Lanka Clear,” he explained.

Chairperson Hatton National Bank, Dr. Ranee Jayamaha in her presentation on ‘Governance and Banking Technology’ said that the director boards in banks and financial institutes need to strategise operational risks of their entities when branches are being linked with innovative IT operational systems to maintain good governance.

Operational risks could be avoided with banks placing proper security IT systems. “If not it will cause a major disruption to links in the entire system.” This would result in customers to move out of the bank, Dr Jayamaha said, adding that in order to minimize operational risks all banks must put in place correct IT and back up systems, as all systems are now based on innovative technology that will negatively impact if systems fail.

She said with the development of innovative IT operational systems there would be high probability in affecting the co-banking systems, ancillary system due to cyber crimes, which includes hacking and data breaching. “Bank boards must promote firewall and other back up systems to combat the situation. If a cyber attack occurs in one bank today the same attack can occur in another banking system. Therefore, all banks should be ethical without fishing in troubled water,” Dr Jayamaha said

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