Morning Brief 12.30.19: Grab and Singtel apply for bank license in Singapore

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The information you need to start your day, from PaymentsSource and around the web:

Grab bank

Grab, the Asian ride-sharing service that provides a range of financial services, is working with Singapore telco Singtel to apply for a full bank license, TechCrunch reports.

The two companies would jointly hold the license, with Grab owning 60% of the consortium and Singtel holding the remainder, the article said.

Grab formally launched Grab Financial in 2018 to offer financing and insurance through the Grab app. This built on top of the success of its GrabPay app.


Wawa Inc. is the target of at least six federal lawsuits seeking class-action status after Wawa disclosed a data breach stemming from malware discovered on its payment processing servers on Dec. 12, 2019, the Philadelphia Inquirer reports.

The lawsuits allege the Pennsylvania supermarket chain’s computer systems failed to block hackers, who installed malware that went undetected for nine months.

The attack compromised customers’ payment card details including names, numbers and expiration dates from transactions at many of Wawa’s 850 stores and gas stations. The lawsuits seek unspecified damages that exceed $5 million, accusing Wawa of negligence, breach of contract and violations of state consumer protection laws.

Key connection

JCB Co., Japan’s leading payment card issuer and acquirer, has established a strategic agreement with blockchain technology company Keychain, according to a press release.

JCB intends to use Keychain’s platform to improve its payment card security defenses and add features to deepen customer engagement.

Keychain, launched three years ago in Tokyo, leverages its Keychain Core product to power a range of services including self-sovereign identity, security, contracts and settlement within personal computers, smartphones and internet of things devices.

Less is more?

The Reserve Bank of India has authorized development of a new prepaid digital payments mechanism for smaller-ticket transactions carrying lower KYC requirements, according to a press release.

Users may sign up using any government ID plus a mobile phone number to make purchases and pay bills — P2P is not supported — and the maximum load per month is 10,000 rupees (US$140).

With this move, India’s government aims to provide a low-risk channel for everyday consumer payments without requiring providers to support full KYC requirements, which have proven costly for digital payments operators like Paytm, according to a report in the Economic Times of India.


The Philippines is one of the world’s heaviest markets for cross-border remittances with more than 120 million funds-transfers sent per month, but only a fraction of transactions are handled digitally, according to a study conducted by Better Than Cash Alliance, a New York-based partnership operating under the United Nations Capital Fund.

About 80% of Filipinos’ remittances require manual processing through walk-in centers, underscoring a big need for digital payments development, the report said.

Despite a high dependence on manual payment processes, digital payments usage has seen a sharp increase in the last several years, rising to 10% of all transaction volume from 1% in 2013.

From the Web

Apple May Remove Coinbase’s Mobile DApp Browser from App Store
COINTELEGRAPH | Sun December 29, 2019
After Google removed Ethereum-based decentralized application (DApp) browser MetaMask from its Android application store, Apple may now force Coinbase to remove the DApp browser feature from its crypto wallet application.

Cybercrime: Online payment systems to be prime targets in 2020
GULF NEWS | Sun December 29, 2019
More cybercriminal groups will target online payment processing systems in 2020, researchers from global cybersecurity and anti-virus brand Kaspersky have warned.

SBI to deactivate these ATM-cum-debit cards from January
LIVEMINT | Sun December 29, 2019
State Bank of India (SBI) has announced that magstripe debit card will be deactivated by 31 December 2019.

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