Category Archives: merchant

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Bitcoin Set to Overtake Mastercard’s Daily Transfer Total

Bitcoin’s daily transaction volume stands at around USD 8 billion, closing in on that of multinational financial services corporation Mastercard’s total of USD 12 billion per day.

Mastercard, the world’s second-largest credit card network released its Q3 financial report on the 30th October showing a USD 4.4 trillion processed so far this year.

Bitcoin clears an average of 272,000 transactions per day totaling USD 8.14 billion-  that is 11,333 transactions every hour.

Admittedly, it is difficult to pull a direct comparison of the two payment processing networks as Bitcoin handles more transaction types than Mastercard (as such seen in exchange transfers). For Bitcoin to handle similar numbers is a huge significance for its nearly 10-year history, meanwhile, Mastercard has been around for over two decades.

What is notably different in the patterns of payments between the two is the disparity in transaction totals. Mastercard handles a far greater number of transactions and is the preferred choice for daily payments, while cryptocurrencies are still seen by many as either a store of value, for cross-border payments or for larger payments.

It is these larger, international payments which the data indicates Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies prove their real value over legacy systems, being often faster, cheaper and easier for both parties.

In proof of this, leading cryptocurrency exchange Binance made a cross-border payment of USD 600 million in BTC accruing just USD 7 fees. The traditional banking sector may collect close to USD 10,000 in fees alongside strenuous identification checks, verification and approval periods, all-consuming a lot of time and creating a lot of paperwork.

A future where daily payments are completed using cryptocurrencies should not be quickly dismissed, that is indeed what the Lightning Network and other projects are currently focused on. However, merchant adoption remains a crucial element to this milestone success.


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Amex Looks to Blockchain for Customer, Merchant Security

Multinational financial services corporation American Express is exploring the potential of a blockchain solution to increase customer and merchant security.

Vice president of technology at American Express, Tereasa Kastel, spoke at the Oktane 18 conference in Las Vegas earlier this week, discussing the multiple uses for blockchain being explored by the corporation.

Protecting identities and information

As reported by TechRadar, identification security and protecting user information formed the basis of Kastel’s speech. She discussed the prospect of an immutable blockchain solution to American Express’s objective of providing the highest levels of user security and data protection.

“If you’re in this industry, you have to have a voracious appetite for all things identity… to be able to work in a world where there is constant change, you… have to always ensure you can stay ahead of the curve,” she noted.

“Being in the financial industry, we have to be somewhat conservative on what legal and regulatory requirements there are,”‘ she added, commenting on the disparity between government policy, or lack of, regarding blockchain.

Despite this, Kastel said: ”On the other hand, what empowers an individual user to do in terms of controlling their identity, and have that identity be immutable, is something you can’t pass by.”

A blockchain identity wallet

Kastel outlined that initial blockchain probes would be limited to financial transactions. Now, however, she reported American Express is looking into creating a blockchain identity wallet.

”We were starting to explore what would an identity wallet look like, and could blockchain be used to help serve as, both internal, but also external card members and merchants,” Kastel said, detailing a visit to the corporation’s research and development lab.

She added that “American Express is a very innovative company”, in an acknowledgement of blockchain as the next seminal development in the technology industry.

Hyperledger blockchain technology

While Kastel’s talk was predominantly focused on the significant role of blockchain in American Express’s future service development, it coincided with the announcement of the corporation’s utilization of hyperledger blockchain technology.

This is being offered to merchants as an opportunity to create tailormade rewards programmes for individual American Express cardholders.


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