6.25.18 Your morning briefing
The information you need to start your day, from PaymentsSource and around the Web:
Is cryptocurrency hurting democracy?
U.S. Sen Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) on Tuesday is scheduled to host a hearing on the potential impact of "shell companies" and cryptocurrencies on U.S. elections.
The hearing will focus on the rules for cryptocurrency donations to campaigns, reports Coindesk.
The Federal Election Commission regards cryptocurrency as an "in kind" donation, though more guidance may be required as cryptocurrency matures as an asset, given concerns over broader election meddling and the use of cryptocurrency as a means to keep transactions anonymous.
More European payment failures
Following recent payment outages at TransferWise and Visa, the Bank of Ireland suffered a debit card glitch that left customers unable to withdraw funds from ATMs or make payments.
One in seven customers was impacted by the outage, which affected travelers, hotel bills and some point of sale transactions, reports the Independent.
The bank told the newspaper the problem had been resolved by the end of last week, though it didn't say how long the glitch lasted.
Marks and Spencer gets more intelligent
As Microsoft works on cashierless technology, it's also branching out with other retail projects.
The software giant is collaborating with Marks and Spencer to install artificial intelligence to accelerate the U.K. retail chain's move toward becoming a "digital first" retailer, reports TechRadar.
Microsoft AI engineers will work with the chain's retail innovation group to find use cases for AI to upgrade shopping, marketing and checkout across different channels.
Worldpay has introduced new transaction authorization that drills deeper into transaction and behavior-driven rules to raise approval rates for online transactions.
Called AuthMax, it adds data points and analytics to improve the balance between false positives and the increased risk of card not present fraud as chip cards mature.
From the Web
After failed MoneyGram bid, Ant Financial goes ‘one better’ with blockchain-based remittance service
South China Morning Post | Mon June 25, 2018 - Alibaba’s financial arm Ant Financial has unveiled a cross-border remittance service based on blockchain technology in a move designed to compete with banks and traditional remittance services. The blockchain money remittance service for its AlipayHK wallet is the first of its kind globally, according to Ant Financial.
Flash payments means credit risks are growing for Norway's banks
The Business Times | Mon June 25, 2018 - The speed of the instant payment highway has regulators in Norway thinking about the guardrails. The central bank is stepping up efforts to improve the country's banking infrastructure as the spreading use of instant payments drives credit risk higher at banks.
HSBC joins the fray for online payments with PayMe app for Hong Kong’s TV shopping service
South China Morning Post | Mon June 25, 2018 - Users of PayMe, HSBC’s mobile payments app, will be able to use it on e-commerce platform HKTVmall this week, Hong Kong’s biggest bank announced on Monday. The partnership with HKTVmall, which features more than 3,000 retailers selling everything from instant noodles to durians to restaurant and holiday coupons, marks HSBC’s first foray into online payments.
More from PaymentsSource
Retail tech ventures' prescription for health care: Paper cuts
Two collaborations in the past week show how office vendors are using automation to free health care patients and office staff from an overwhelmingly paper-heavy process of invoicing and payments.
BIS' crypto warning doesn't consider blockchain's nonfinancial benefits
The warning doesn't touch on blockchain's nonfinancial applications, where it is making more of an impact, contends Joseph Thompson, CEO and co-founder of AID:Tech.
TransferWise suffers outage on heels of Visa's blackout
While Europe is still making sense of an international Visa outage in early June, fintech disruptor TransferWise experienced its own outage that lasted up to 11 hours on Thursday, with website, app and card payments unavailable to the company’s 1 million-plus users.
GoFundMe's team platform sets the stage for more complex payments
GoFundMe's new team fundraising feature lays the foundation for bigger groups to use the platform for collecting payments — nudging it closer to the tools merchants use to manage business expenses.