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How technology is tacklinghuman trafficking

Alexon Bell, Global Head of AML and Compliance at Quantexa

Technology is both a blessing and a curse for officials fighting against human trafficking.

With the rise of social media and a world growing smaller through communication platforms, alongside the accessibility of online advertisements and encrypted messaging apps, traffickers have a host of technologies at their fingertips to help entrap victims, advertise their services and cover up the trafficker’s own illegal activity.

However, new technologies are becoming increasingly sophisticated and are playing a key role in eliminating human trafficking. Some are used to discoverand rescue victims, others to identify networks of perpetrators. Many of these advancements are beginning to empower governments to source the root of trafficking rings and stop the activity at its core. In turn, this puts a new and heavier responsibility onto banks and corporates to innovate and improve their systems to themselves spot any nefarious activity and feed this back into the global effort against trafficking.

Spotting victims

At the heart of each case of human trafficking is a victim, butknowing the identity of this victim is difficult. Hundreds of images of abused children are shared online every day – even if all of these are flagged, many will be duplicates of cases that have already been actioned. Understanding whether an image is a duplicate or a new photo – which would require a new response from law enforcement – is difficult as such images are hard to track.

Previously, traffickers wanting to proliferate an image could make small tweaks to it, such as adding marks or a resizing the photo….

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What Your Bank Doesn’t Want You to Know

Money is an essential element of our lives, and so is the need for banking. Banks keep our money safe and give us an opportunity to invest wisely and take loans when needed.

There is hardly any person who doesn’t own a bank account these days. If you are among billions of people who have a bank account and you are wondering whether you are using its services to the full potential, then you must read on.

Here we have mentioned a list of things, what your bank doesn’t want you to know to make you a bit more aware about how banks work and how you might be getting scammed by not being vigilant enough.

  • Using All Extras is Essential

If you want to ensure that you are getting your money’s worth while maintaining a bank account then you should make sure that you make use of all the extras provided by the bank, be it travel insurance or rewards & offers. Otherwise, your bank account will not be worth all the money you pay to maintain it.

  • Payments Before Deposits

Assume that you deposited money in your bank account on the same day when many payments like car EMI, home EMI, etc. were to be deducted. In such a case, you cannot be sure of the fact that the bank will add the money first and then cut the EMI’s. On the contrary, some banks will deduct the payments first so that…

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Transforming legacy system by migrating to the cloud

Stephan Schmidt-Tank, Senior Manager, Financial Services Business & Market Development at Amazon Web Services 

  1. Is helping clients with core banking software something that AWS has looked at, or would consider looking at?

We’re seeing a wave of change sweeping the industry directly related to financial institutions’ move to the cloud, and core systems are no exception.  Our customers – both financial institutions and providers of financial solutions – are using AWS services to both transform legacy core systems by migrating them to the cloud, and to innovate in this space by bringing new cloud-native core systems to market.

For example, Monzo, a U.K. based bank that is currently live with limited-edition debit cards, uses the AWS Cloud to host its core banking application to leverage scale and flexibility of cloud computing as well as eliminate the guessing game around capacity, provisioning, and infrastructure management.

Another great example includes our work with Starling Bank, the UK mobile-only challenger bank designed and built completely on the AWS Cloud. The bank uses AWS to deliver and scale infrastructure on demand while ensuring proper governance by managing developer privileges for releases on AWS via automation with Slack. Starling Bank also engaged directly, and early on, with UK and EU banking regulators on its use of AWS to build and operate all of its infrastructure, including its core banking. It was able to demonstrate to these bodies that it could effectively meet its security and compliance obligations.


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Financial Toolkit for Millennials

By Ben Rodgers, Chartered Financial Planner at Equilibrium Asset Management  

Many people, including those in their twenties, don’t consider financial planning. Ask why and you’ll generally hear excuses like ‘I don’t know enough about finance’ or ‘I don’t have enough money to actually plan with!’.

What most people don’t realise is that financial planning isn’t about money. It’s not about paying into a pension or picking the right investments. These are all just tools. Financial planning is about considering your future and then utilising these tools to help you navigate it with confidence.

But it’s crucial to get to grips with this early. I meet with clients of all ages and backgrounds and I often hear the same thing, ‘I wish I’d started sooner’. Whether you have £10 in your account or £10,000, getting a better understanding of what tools are available can help you start planning for your future earlier.

Here, I’m going to talk you through a few of the basic tools for financial planning. It won’t give you a headache or anxiety or bombard you with numbers, but hopefully after reading it you’ll realise the decisions you make now with your money could end up being the most important.


I’ll be honest, investing can get very complicated very fast. The thing is, it doesn’t need to be. Investing comes down to a few basics;

  • Knowing how much you can afford to invest (or potentially lose)
  • Knowing how much risk you can take
  • Having enough time to grow your money and recoup your losses, when they occur

And that’s it.

Investments should ideally be considered for the long-term, so if your plans mean that you might need it before then (such as for a house deposit or holiday) you probably shouldn’t be investing it. All investments can fall as well as rise, so make sure you have an easily accessible ‘rainy day’ fund in cash for any unexpected expenses that might creep up on…

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Almost three-quarters of London startups staying put despite Brexit uncertainty

It has now been more than two years since the UK voted in favour of leaving the European Union, and new research from Studio Graphene in partnership with City Road Communications reveals how Brexit has impacted on London’s early stage businesses.

Based on a survey of more than 100 founders of London startups, the study shows that since the EU referendum the vast majority entrepreneurs have remained loyal to the capital, showing no sign that they want to move to help improve the growth prospects of their business. It also uncovered the way young companies are responding to the challenges posed by Brexit.

The survey, carried out throughout May 2018, found:

  • Only 28% of founders of London-based businesses said they have considered relocating as a consequence of Brexit, with 72% happy to stay put regardless of this development
  • However, it did uncover some issues that startups would like to see addressed:
    • A quarter (24%) feel the Government should do more to help educate startups about how Brexit policies will affect their business
  • There are also concerns about movement of skilled workers:
    • 33% of respondents said they think there is a shortage of tech talent in London, while 29% of businesses cited an inability to hire the right personnel as a major barrier preventing them from growing
    • 11% added that even before Brexit the UK’s visa and immigration laws have already prevented them hiring the staff they need
  • Yet there also remains positivity among startups; 62% of London startup founders believe…

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