The media powerhouse VICE, announced earlier this year the launch of VICE Money – a channel dedicated to educating millennials about all things money related. They seek to break down today's biggest financial topics, from taxes, the housing market, banking and much more, with content that's fit for millennials.
So, what is one of the biggest topics shaping todays financial landscape? FinTech.
When Fiat money came into the world several hundred years ago, it gave rise to what we all know as banks; the trusted institution to protect and provision our money. The traditional service they offer means going to a bricks and mortar branch to conduct our financial relationships. Yet, this is no longer acceptable for the speed at which we operate today.
People no longer have the time or attention to spend at the bank. Mobility is propelling the world forward and digital cash is slowly replacing Fiat money. Even more important, millennials are comparing their user experience against the tech giants – Apple, Google and Facebook. These companies have essentially become the benchmark for all applications.
FinTechs are responding to this; reshaping financial services to align with today’s reality. Even more, few trends have reached the same magnitude of disruption as it has. Yet, keeping up to date with this ever-changing landscape can be challenging, not to mention, understanding what it all means.
This new series, Net Worth, is helping to decode the FinTech industry. They’re answering your biggest questions, from “What is FinTech anyway?” to the challenges that sparked its inception and how its working to solve them. Each of the videos in the three-part series touch on a different aspect of FinTech
NetWorth, which debuted June 6th, is narrated by real Toronto companies that specialize in an aspect of FinTech, including BioConnect. The VICE team visited our office to ask us about identity and security, specifically, its role in FinTech.
How does identity fit into the digital landscape?
Banks have become our trusted financial institutions because they operate in a world of regulation with KYC and AML, all of which are in place to protect our money. With this old delivery model, you could simply go into a branch and do a face to face verification, with paper and plastic credentials, to prove your identity.
Yet, when you moved to a digital space, identity becomes much more complicated. Although you're no longer tied to bricks and mortar, you still need to find a way to verify identity. How do you do that when you don’t have the benefit of a person standing on the other side of the counter?
Biometrics play a tremendous role here. They are the last inch between technology and the human, enabling greater assurance around the protection of your data because the person on the other end of the transaction is known. Essentially, biometrics are your vehicle for confirming that people have the same identity across both physical and digital spaces.
I can’t stress this enough – identity must be incorporated into the evolution of financial technology.
Why We’re Here – MaRS!
I could not be more excited to take part in this series, which comes largely thanks to MaRS Discovery District. As I’ve mentioned in my most recent post, MaRS is a key player in propelling Toronto’s ecosystem forward.
MaRS has provided us with access to networks of strategic partners, investors, talent and customers alike, while providing expert mentorship. They are so valuable to BioConnect that they’ve become an advisor to us – they’ve risen to that level. The length at which they work to promote Toronto start-ups and scale-ups is unparalleled. It is incubators like MaRS that are enabling Toronto to become the next tech hub, as some are calling the ‘Silicon Valley of the North”.
With that, I’ll say go follow @vice_money and @MaRSDD #MaRSNetWorth on Twitter to catch Episode 3, as BioConnect touches on identity and security.