Cardonio Bounty Campaign: What is an ICO Bounty Program and How to Incorporate it into an ICO Campaign?

The crypto-world is becoming bigger and interesting as we speak. The industry experts are ever restless, launching new alt-coins almost every day. But this is not the only thing that is being done in this industry. Once you start following the news, you will see a lot of new terms and activities that quite frankly don’t make any sense to some people as well. One of these terms is ICO bounty program. You must be wondering, Wait, what is that?

 

If you had a chance to get familiar with some unorthodox marketing techniques in the past, then there is a good chance you can guess what ICO bounty is all about. And no, it doesn’t involve anyone becoming a pirate at any given point in time. Let’s see what ICO bounties are, and what role they play in an ICO campaign.

 

What is an ICO Bounty?

 

The Initial Coin Offering is an effort made by cryptocurrency startups to raise money for their project. Everything starts with the whitepaper, which translates into a business plan. The whitepaper usually contains:

 

  • A detailed explanation of what the project is about.
  • The reason why the project was started, and whether there’s a real need in the world for it.
  • A financial plan, where the key point is how much money the startup needs to get things going.
  • The precise number of newly created crypto tokens that the project creators will keep for themselves.
  • Information on whether the startup will accept only cryptocurrencies or regular cash as well.
  • The end date for the ICO campaign.

 

During the ICO campaign, a cryptocurrency startup’s main goal is to raise as much money as they can. On the other hand, investors are motivated to invest in it by the quality of the whitepaper, especially by the part where the real need for the cryptocurrency is explained, and the hope that the cryptocurrency’s price will spike after the plan launches.

 

The more people learn about the ICO, the better, simply because the number of potential investors rises. This is where the ICO bounty comes in. Some startups don’t have the money to hire PR and marketing firms to help them raise money. An ICO bounty is an efficient and cheap way to spread the word about the ICO by outsourcing marketing to regular people.

 

An ICO bounty can be something very simple, such as logo creation, a mention in the comments of a popular YouTube video, a full YouTube video, forum posts, content creation, and so on. Upon completing it, the startup rewards the bounty hunters with the brand new cryptocurrency.

 

What is an ICO Bounty Program?

 

The ICO bounty program is a specific marketing effort a startup decides to implement. The more detailed the ICO bounty program is, the greater the chances for the startup to reach success. ICO bounty programs help startups in two distinctive ways.

 

First, they help them spread the word of their ICO, and, secondly, bounty programs can help startups get the bugs out of their code by using high-end programmers which they cannot afford to have on their payroll.

 

An ICO bounty program may involve all sorts of activities ranging from signature and social media campaigns, to content creation and translation campaigns as well. Companies like ICO Bounty incorporates and offers multiple types of ICO bounty programs, both pre-ICO and post-ICO ones. All of this isn’t done in an erratic fashion. Over the years startups in the crypto world have learned a lot. Let’s see what types of ICO bounty programs there are.

 

The Framework and the Types

 

Before you decide which ICO bounty will work best for your startup, you have to get familiar with the ICO bounty framework as a whole.

 

The term pre-ICO bounty programs, as the name implies, refers to all the bounty efforts made before the ICO launch. Their primary purpose is to create the buzz and get your marketing ball rolling. The ultimate goal is to significantly increase awareness and get investors interested in your startup and upcoming ICO.

 

Pre-ICO bounty programs include the following activities:

 

  • Social media campaigns – these bounties are designed to use the followers of the participants’ social media accounts to raise awareness of the ICO. It is important to distribute rewards depending on the engagement levels generated by the “bounty hunters”. The most popular social media platforms used in this instance are Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube.
  • Content creation – many of the people interested in cryptocurrencies have blogs with large audiences. These bounties are designed to motivate them to write articles about your ICO on their popular blogs.
  • Signature bounties – these are the most popular ones, as they are open to all the people at the Bitcointalk forum. Startups usually restrict these bounties only for people who have a Jr. Member rank or above on this forum.
  • Post-ICO bounty programs are launched after the money for the ICO launch has been raised, to collect the feedback from the community so that improvements can be made. But, spreading the word to as many people as possible still remains the underlying goal of this effort. The most popular bounties for the post-ICO stage go as follows:
  • Translation – documents like the whitepaper, the official cryptocurrency website, and the Bitcointalk ANN thread are translated into several world languages.
  • Bug Hunting and Reporting – every cryptocurrency platform and software has bugs, especially when it is young. Bug reporting bounties are designed to motivate people to report the bugs as soon as they discover them.

 

Costs and Benefits

 

All the information so far clearly implies that the benefits of ICO bounty programs are huge. They offer unique opportunities for startups on a limited budget to spread the word about their ICO, get more people interested in investing in it, and make improvements to the platform after the ICO goes live.

 

When it comes to the costs, they are next to none. Some of the blockchain startups do hire bounty campaign managers, which significantly increases the costs of running a bounty campaign.

 

You can also consider getting listed on websites frequently visited by ICO bounty hunters to engage as many of them as possible. In any case, all the costs associated with these efforts are significantly lower than the costs of hiring a marketing or PR firm.

 

Famous ICO Bounty Programs

 

One of the most famous ICO bounty programs was launched by Rentberry. The idea was quite genius – they used Blockchain technology and smart contracts to enable people to enjoy an easier rental process, and their ICO bounty program is what made it possible for the project to start.

 

Another one is VRT World, a startup devoted to developing a decentralized global platform for all VR enthusiasts in the world.

 

People can take part in all sorts of VR activities and get exclusive access to the cutting-edge VR technologies on this platform. Their bounty fund is around 2% of all sold VR tokens. The majority of the bounty fund (30%) is reserved for the signature and avatar campaign bounty.

 

BitNautic also leveraged ICO bounty programs to incentivize the people to invest in their decentralized shipping and cargo platform. Around 5% of their total coin supply is reserved for bounty campaigns. More than half of their bounty budget is reserved for mainstream media, social media, and signature bounties.

 

Hopefully, the term ICO bounty is closer to you than before. As you can see the ICO bounties have a lot of marketing potential for startups on a limited budget. You can incorporate them into pre and post-ICO efforts to maximize their effectiveness.

 

Source: What is an ICO Bounty Program and How to Incorporate it into an ICO Campaign?

The Complete Guide to Offshore Banking by Bowman Offshore Bank Transfers

The Complete Guide to Offshore Banking

This guide covers how you put your money into banks and institutions around the world and is a good primer to the world of offshore banking.

As a disclaimer, this is not financial advice, nor does this article instruct you in any way. It is simply information that you may take or leave. We are not responsible for any gains or losses, nor are we responsible for what you do with this information.

Note that with the recent Panama Papers revelation in 2016 that’s taken the world by storm, there’s a LOT more scrutiny on offshore banking and it’s very likely that banking regulations (especially in the EU and North America) will undergo changes to make it more difficult to ‘hide’ money.

Hiding Your Money Overseas…Offshore Bank Accounts?

If you are thinking about offshore banking to remain anonymous, then you may be disappointed. For example, if you are looking into a tax scam where you hope to hide money from your own government, then it is very difficult.

The first reason it is difficult is because the US and Europe have signed deals with independent banks that allows them to look into peoples accounts, which means your secret Swiss or Cuban bank account is not as secret as you thought it was.

The second reason is because the US and UK (especially) have sophisticated monitoring technology that gives them secret and semi-legal access to computers around the world. This means your secret money is rarely as secret or safe as you would like.

You should also remember that some companies and banks are not as stable or secure abroad. There are some banks that will take your money and you have no legitimate way of getting it back or punishing those that stole from you.

When Is It A Good Idea To Put Money Abroad?

Some people do it because they earn better interest abroad. Some do it because it is safer in foreign banks. Some do it because they want to keep a certain amount in a certain currency, and some do it to hide their money from loved ones or business partners. Some people put money in offshore accounts so they may legally buy things or spend money. For example, some put money into foreign accounts so they may play online poker. Some people travel abroad frequently to the point where it is cheaper to keep money in a certain currency in a certain country.

A government agency may easily discover the money you have hidden, but even with a good lawyer, there is no way your spouse or business partner will find out where you have hidden your money.

How Much Do You Have To Deposit?

There are many offshore banks that will require a substantial first deposit before they allow you to open an account. Even banks that allow their home-turf citizens to open account for free may still demand that you make a $1000+ deposit before opening your account. Do your research into how much deposit you need to pay before you start making plans to open your account.

How Much Are The Fees?

They are going to vary from bank to bank and from country to country. There are some banks that will charge you higher fees because you are not living in the country where the bank is located. Standard bank fees are not so much of a worry. Your main concern should be partially hidden fees, such as withdrawal and transaction fees.

What About Tax In The Offshore Bank’s Country?

In most cases, you are going to have to pay tax on the interest you make. There are few countries that will allow you to earn interest in their country without paying tax. You need to double and triple check to see if you will need to pay tax, and how much you will need to pay. If a country does not impose tax in the interest you earn, then you have to ask yourself why. Is it because the banks and/or the country is going to go bust at some point soon?

International Banking Insurance

Most developed countries have some sort of regulatory body that protects your money with a form of insurance. In the US, it is the FDIC (Deposit Insurance Coverage), and in the UK, it is the FSCS (Financial Services Compensation Scheme).

If you lose money up to a certain amount through fraud and other things of that nature, there is a good chance they will refund and/or replace your money up to a certain point. The banks and companies that do “not” offer this sort of protection are often able to offer higher rates of interest.

Can I Use Online Banking?

There are very few legitimate offshore banks that only operate offline. There are still some, but most offshore banks will have an online banking option. This means you can conduct transactions and check your account online. There are certain restrictions with some countries where you are not allowed to access your bank websites, but most people use VPN (virtual private network) services to get around that.

For example, if you have an account in China and they won’t let you access your account from the US, you use a VPN service and use a server in China. The bank’s computers think you are browsing from China, so they allow you access to your bank account.

Legitimate Banks Will Undertake Due Diligence

This means they will need proof of your identity and where you are getting your money from. If you are looking for a sneaky bank where you are looking to hide money from the government, then they will be less interested in due diligence matters. If a bank is offering you a seemingly unreasonable amount of security and privacy, then be wary. There are many legal factions and many government factions that are unable to find out if you have cash hidden abroad, but most developed countries have aggressive ways of finding out how much money you have sent abroad.

Do not forget that shady and illegitimate banks are not just for people trying to hide money. Many times, they are used by scammers to collect money from the people they have swindled. This leaves the banks in a very precarious position where sometimes it is better to close down rather than take the heat from the government authorities that are coming after them. These banks are often brass plate banks, where it is in their interest to close down and set up somewhere else rather than face police and government problems and pressure.

Brass plate banks are banks with very few assets and often with very few staff members. They sometimes only deal with foreigners, and many times, they are not open to the public. They are usually located in offices.

Ask Directly If the Bank Will Do What You Need

You can read all the small print, but it is often better to ask questions outright, rather than try to find an answer in their paperwork. The reason is because sometimes they do not mention things in their paperwork. Sometimes they have their own unwritten rules, or their own policies that are not clearly explained or defined in their paperwork.

For example, you may wish to make purchases in countries that your government has imposed sanctions on. The country in which you have opened your account may not have such sanctions, and so you may feel safe in buying the products. However, the offshore bank may not allow you to make such purchases because “your” country has imposed sanctions and the bank doesn’t want to appear complicit in your breaking of “your” country’s law.

Another common example is where people set up offshore accounts so they may gamble online. They then discover that even though the offshore bank is in a country where online gambling is legal, they will not allow your bank account to be used for online gambling (even though they allow their other bank users to gamble online).

Ask their customer service department and/or their advisors if they are able to fulfill your needs before you open your account. Try to get something in writing too, such as a confirmation by email. This is because it is not uncommon for banks to tell you that they allow online gambling with your account, but then decide they do not because they didn’t check which country you live in. Or, they say you are allowed to gamble online, but only allow you to gamble on certain websites and freeze your account when they see deposits made to other gambling companies.

Canada Is A Good Place to Start

Have you considered Canada as your first place for an offshore bank. If Canadian banks meet your needs, it is very easy to get an account. You can take a trip up there with your paperwork and open an account by walking into a branch. Usually, it is as easy as that if you are from the US or Europe. Check to see what information and documents you need to take, and walk into a branch to open an account.

There are numerous other European countries where it is just as easy to open an offshore account, but Canada is closer, and their banks are very accustomed to opening accounts for people from the US. Just be sure to get an appointment prior to making your trip because some banks will insist on an appointment.

Opening Your Account Online

There are a great many banks that will allow you to open an account online, but you have to be very careful when you do it. For example, you may take the example above and decide to open an account in Canada. You look it up on the Internet and see that it says, “Open an account here” or something similar. So, you click to open your account and it goes through, and all seems okay…right?

Wrong. Some banks will require a personal visit in order to open an account. Some banks (legitimate ones) will need to see you in person to open an account. If they allow you to open one online, it may be that you have actually opened an account with a US branch or with a partner of the bank (which is not what you wanted).

Some banks will allow you to partially open your account online. They will then ask for a visit at some point, or they will send you applications in the mail or via email. You may have to photocopy or scan certain documents, and provide access to your information in your own country, and the process can take between two weeks and a month.

Credit Cards and Your Credit Rating

Your credit rating is a tricky business. Sometimes it is all about your credit rating in the country where you have opened your account, and sometimes your credit rating appears to merge with that of your own country. As for credit cards, those too are a trick subject when it comes to your credit rating. Usually, they have a positive effect on your credit rating if you pay them off quickly. However, if you gamble with them, they may be viewed as irregular use and may affect your ability to get further credit. This applies to credit cards you get domestically and overseas. There are also many banks that will not allow you to gamble with the money from your credit card, and some may freeze your account if they see you making deposits to gambling websites with your credit card.

Banks That Demand a Large Turnover

There are some banks that will allow you to open an account on the understanding that your account wills turnover a certain amount of money every term (usually every year). If the amount of turnover they ask for is a large amount, it is highly recommended that you open the account in person. It is mostly a security issue, since you want to be as sure as possible that the bank is real, and that you are passing your information (and eventually your money) over to the right people.

Do I Need A Minimum Balance?

There are some banks that will require you to maintain a minimum balance in your account. If you do not, then you are charged either a higher fee than your usual fee, or a cumulative charge fee (the same as if you overdraw your bank balance). The bank may offer free overseas accounts, but start charging you a fee if you do not maintain a certain set of minimum balances.

How to move money offshore by Bowman Offshore Bank Transfers

Having an offshore bank account — or two… or three — is an important step in planting flags around the world. As we often discuss, the actual opening of an account is relatively easy, and you don’t need a lot of money.

In my guide, The Best Offshore Banks, we discuss 55 banks that will open offshore accounts for anyone with as little as $500 to deposit. In some cases, you won’t even have to leave your living room, as a number of Caribbean and even European banks allow for remote account opening.

However, the bigger challenge for offshore banking newbies is how to move money offshore; precisely, how to get your onshore funds into your new offshore account.

To make things clear, this article is NOT about how to hide money offshore. While the media loves to do gotcha pieces about how easy it is to move money overseas, the reality is that playing by the rules is a lot better way to go.

In the era of FATCA, mutual legal assistance policies among governments, and offshore bank account reporting requirements, you don’t want to play hide and seek. When used legally, offshore bank accounts are an excellent asset protection tool to protect you from bankrupt governments.

If you don’t have an offshore bank account yet, you can learn more about how to get one here. However, if you do have an account but are confused about how to move money into it, here are several strategies for funding your offshore bank account.

International wire transfer

The most common and straightforward method is to simply wire the money from your onshore account (or your existing offshore account) to the new offshore account. Wire transfers work well because there is often no limit to the amount you can send, making it the most practical option for large transfers.

In some countries, sending a wire transfer is extremely simple and affordable. My Hong Kong bank charges about $11 to send money almost anywhere. The only problem is when the transfer gets rejected for some reason by the receiving party and I’m charged a large return fee. This shouldn’t be an issue, however, if you’re wiring money to yourself.

The downside to sending a wire is that it could take a while to arrive in some smaller banking jurisdictions, like Belize, that involve “correspondent banks” that are often in the US or Germany.

In countries where bankers tend to freak out about international wire transfers (see: the United States), you may need to go into a branch to initiate the wire. I know people who have had their US bank accounts restricted for daring to send an international wire transfer to themselves, so be careful. Then again, isn’t that why you wanted to move money offshore to begin with?

Transferwise

If you want to transfer money online, but don’t want to send a wire transfer, new services like Transferwise can help. (For a full review of the different services, read our article on the best ways to transfer money internationally coming out in September 2016.)

Transferwise is based on a peer-to-peer system that cuts out middleman banks and allegedly reduces the fees of moving money overseas. I haven’t found this to be the case; the cost to send $5,000 to a foreign bank account was as much as $50; even crappy US banks charge less to send larger wires.

In reality, services like Transferwise are a better replacement for expensive money senders like Western Union or Moneygram, not for replacing wire transfers. However, Transferwise is easier to use than a wire if your domestic bank dislikes your moving money offshore, since you send the money domestically and their service handles the rest.

Take cash from an ATM

It sounds too easy, but among the easiest ways to move money offshore is merely to take it out offshore to begin with. Sometimes, the simplest solutions are the best.

In The Best Offshore Banks, we discuss a number of high quality banks that require $2,000, $1,000, or even less in their foreign currency equivalent to open. The only catch with some of these banks is that — unlike accounts that allow you to wire money in later — you need to deposit the money when you open the account.

These banks don’t allow remote account opening, but you can literally use their ATM to take out the amount of the minimum deposit. If you’re domestic bank ATM card imposes a limit on daily withdrawals (usually $400 or $500 for US banks), you may need to plan one day ahead so you can max out the limit on two different days in order to get enough cash.

Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies

Bitcoin has been put forward as the possible “ultimate offshore bank account” due to its ability to store money securely in the cloud. Bitcoin guru Stephanie Murphy spoke extensively about the privacy benefits of using Bitcoin at two of my Passport to Freedom conferences.

However, Bitcoin can also be used as a mechanism to transfer funds offshore. If you own Bitcoin in your home country, you can access them in your destination country by using services like Local Bitcoins, or by using one of the growing numbers of platforms that connects directly to a bank account.

Coinapult, for instance, allows you to store Bitcoins and freeze their value to the value of a foreign currency, gold, or silver, reducing volatility until you want to move them into your foreign bank account. Coinbase and other services allow transfers to connected bank accounts, although many offshore jurisdictions are not yet supported.

Sell your gold and silver

If you own gold or silver offshore, such as in a vault here in Singapore, you can often sell those precious metals and have funds wired into your local bank account. Singapore is an excellent option for this as gold storage here is highly secure and Singapore bank accounts are also excellent.

If you already own gold and silver, there are ways to ship it overseas (again, Singapore is a good option) and later sell it for cash. Transporting gold on your person can be risky since customs forms are required in many cases. You should also make sure you follow all rules regarding sales of precious metals, capital gains taxes and other reporting requirements in your home country. Consult a tax professional for help.

If you’re wondering why “put money in a suitcase and show up in the Virgin Islands” isn’t on the list, it’s because almost everyone on earth — save those in Hong Kong and a few other countries — has to declare cash being taken out of the country.

While transporting any amount of cash is legal in most countries, most law-abiding citizens don’t carry large amounts of cash over borders. Those who do often make customs officials suspicious enough to go so far as to confiscate your cash. On top of the legal hassles, most banks don’t want huge piles of cash being deposited due to money laundering concerns; many banks now charge a cash deposit fee for the privilege.

Tokyo MK Taxi: Things to Consider Before Traveling

Planning a vacation includes selecting your destination, a place to stay and a transportation service that will get you the places in your itinerary. You need to be extra careful and pay attention to everything so you could have a memorable vacation ever. The very first thing you need to decide is the places you like to visit and the activities you want to do. Choose places that can help you relax and forget your work commitments.

The next to be considered is the accommodation. Make sure to book a comfortable place for your stay and of course, within your budget. Do some research online for hotel promos and do not forget to read trusted reviews to serve as a guide in choosing the most desirable hotel in your destination. If you already have a schedule for your trip, book your accommodation as early as possible so you could take advantage of potential cost-saving options they may offer for early bookings.

The next area of concern is the transportation service you are going to avail. There is numerous reputable chauffeur service available to cater your transportation needs. Tokyo MK Taxi has long been serving the people of Japan, Korea and the United States as a global company providing high-quality taxi and chauffeur service at a very reasonable price. They offer not just a ride in comfort and style, but an easy and stress-free way to travel and arrive at your destination. Tokyo MK Taxi features Lexus group enthusiasts and cars included in their vehicle fleet are Lexus 600hl, Lexus 460, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Toyota Hiace and Nissan Fuga Hybrid and much more. With over 212 types of taxi and 58 different models of luxurious vehicles, we can provide the right chauffeur car service for everyone’s needs. For more details, you can visit their website.

When you hire Tokyo MK Taxi, you get the best customer service without having to wait in lines, deal with incompetent drivers or pay more than you should. You can travel with your own personal space and with a sense of security.

Galveston Capital Tourism and Marketing on Bali’s 2017 Tourist Village Awards Highlights Growing Development on Island

Gianyar. Bali’s local government awarded 29 villages with silver and bronze stars at the 2017 Tourist Village Awards at Taman Nusa cultural park in Gianyar district on Friday (26/05).

The event’s committee head, Made Mendra Astawa, said awards were given to villages who displayed concerted efforts to develop amenities and infrastructure to attract a growing number of tourists.

Seventeen villages were awarded silver stars, while 12 others received bronze stars. However, no villages were awarded with gold.

Mendra said the committee, comprised of 14 judges, conducted their assessments from April 20 to May 18 and applied regional standards to evaluate each village.

Bali Tourism Agency head A.A. Yuniartha said he hopes all tourist villages on the island, which total 104, can work to develop local amenities and attract a larger number of visitors.

“We hope that all of our villages will be transformed into tourist destinations, many visitors, especially from Europe, are fond of villages,” Yuniartha said.

The agency head noted that revamped tourist villages will ultimately boost the local economy and help eradicate poverty on the island, as villages across the archipelago see increased development funding from the government in Jakarta.

“Government funds should be used to develop tourist villages, to minimize the rising migration to major cities of our rural populations,” Yuniartha said.

“However, I am afraid that after a district head issues a decision or policy initiative, local populations will not follow through on their end of the bargain.”

The Ministry of Tourism has been working to develop and renovate tourism villages and homestays across the archipelago in a bid to attract as many as 20 million foreign visitors to the country by 2019.

An additional 20,000 new homestays are slated for development by the end of this year.

Tourism Minister Arief Yahya praised the 29 awardees for their recent transformations.

“These villages should be proud, they are an example for other tourism villages all across the archipelago,” Arief said.

“Once tourism villages develop, they will be promoted on digital marketplaces to draw visitors intrigued by local culture and countryside living.”

Online Fraud Detection on 5 ecommerce fraud predictions for 2017

5 ecommerce fraud predictions for 2017

Ecommerce fraud is on the rise as more consumers turn to online shopping. Luckily, by being vigilant, merchants can fight fraud and win.

As the number of consumers turning to online shopping increases, the rise of online fraud is also rising.

Those committing internet crimes are depriving their victims of either funds, interests, personal property and/or sensitive data. As the threat escalates, consumers and companies alike are seeking various methods to tackle the phenomenon.

Ecommerce fraud has a long and controversial history. Thus, providing a forecast for the months ahead can help retailers adopt an adequate solution to confront the many challenges in 2017.

1. Identity theft and friendly fraud

The main threat will remain identity theft. Fraudsters will seek your personal information. Their main goal is to use a different identity and, for example, place an online order. Identity theft also includes a concept known as man-in-the-middle attacks where credit-card data is intercepted and copied as it is transferred online.

In the practice of friendly fraud, a customer pays for ordered goods and/or services through a direct debit or a credit card. The second step involves a deliberate chargeback from the issuing bank, taking place only after receiving the purchased goods or service. The involved fraudster then goes on to claim the credit card or details of customer’s account has been stolen. While the “customer” is reimbursed, they decide to keep hold of the goods.

2. Merchant and triangulation fraud

In merchant fraud, the goods are provided at extremely low prices yet no shipment takes place. There is also a wholesale version of this fraud. No specific method enjoys any exclusivity, yet it is common knowledge that no-chargeback payment methods come to life in this practice of fraud. This also involves a majority of the push payment types.

Considered as one of the more complex ecommerce attack methods, triangulation fraud involves quite a bit of collaboration, as three points are involved. Role #1 belongs to an ordinary customer placing an order through a type of credit, debit or PayPal tender. Role #2 involves a fraudulent seller receiving the placed order, then requesting the actual product from a legitimate ecommerce website while using a stolen credit card. Role #3 is the part played by a legitimate ecommerce website completing the order requested, completely unaware of the criminal nature.

3. Affiliate and clean fraud

Two types of affiliate fraud are popular these days, while both seek one objective. By manipulating sign-up data or traffic, fraudsters are pursuing the objective of collecting more money. Options include actual people using fake accounts who log into sites of merchants or simply employing an automated process.

Clean fraud also involves the use of a stolen credit to make an order. In such a method, criminals resort to complicated practices, such as using sound analyses equipped in fraud detection systems, and obtaining in-depth data on the owners of stolen credit cards. This information is needed to deceive the payment process and bypass the fraud detection solution.

4. The counterattack

Online piracy and the sale of counterfeit goods will face new challenges, as the U.S. Department of Justice has declared a new initiative teaming up state and local law enforcement agencies in this struggle. Washington has already pumped $3.2 million into this campaign.

New state-of-the-art advances are also making life more difficult for fraudsters, especially with the introduction of EMV chip card technology. This is a significant leap forward in enhancing credit card security, providing a strong incentive for small and large companies to jump on the bandwagon.

5. Fighting fraud

Fraud prevention and chargeback guarantee for ecommerce merchants, Riskified works on establishing genuine financial security between online customers and ecommerce merchants. This company delivers ecommerce fraud prevention solutions for merchants to certify previously avoided transactions.

At a time when the relationship between a buyer and a seller is in search of trust more than ever before, customer experience and the bottom line is protected through the services provided by this firm in pioneering the charge-back guarantee.

“We founded Riskified with the retailer in mind and have grown adept at servicing the needs global retailers have as they expand their e-commerce and m-commerce operations to provide more personalization to consumers,” says co-founder and CEO Eido Gal, signaling the high demand and importance of such services in today’s digitized world.

As calls for digital goods increase, we are witnessing a rise in the necessity of protection against fraud.

“Digital goods, such as electronic gift cards and e-tickets, are becoming increasingly popular. In the U.S., over $127 billion is spent on gift cards annually,” Shalhevet Zohar explained in a blog post about ecommerce fraud trends.

Such statistics, growing as we speak, demonstrate the huge market fraudsters seek to tap into—and the utmost necessity for consumers to be adequately prepared.

Final thoughts

The fraud landscape is a constantly changing and evolving phenomenon, demanding an adaptive approach to remain at top of your game. Retailers in the U.S. have suffered $109 billion more due to suspected fraud costs resulting from false declines of legitimate orders. This is far beyond actual fraud losses. The ecommerce industry is increasing its demand for fraud prevention platforms, and there is a new revenue opportunity for those companies able to provide such high-valued expertise.

Online Security Review Steps to Protect Yourself from Tax Identity Fraud

By William F. Whelan, guest columnist and Senior VP, Branch/Government Banking, Capital Bank.

As the 2017 tax season gets underway, Capital Bank of New Jersey is urging all customers to take extra precaution when filing their return to prevent their exposure to tax fraud.

“Fraudsters are using very clever tactics to get a hold of your personal information and submit false tax claims,” said David J. Hanrahan, Sr., President and CEO. “Consumers must be suspicious of any communication from the IRS—through e-mail, text or social media—that requests personal information, and should keep a watchful eye out for missing W-2s and mail containing sensitive financial information.”

Tax identity fraud takes place when a criminal files a false tax return using a stolen Social Security number in order to fraudulently claim the refund. Identity thieves generally file false claims early in the year and victims are unaware until they file a return and learn one has already been filed in their name.

To help consumers prevent tax ID fraud, Capital Bank of New Jersey is offering the following tips:

  1. File early. File your tax return as soon as you’re able, giving criminals less time to use your information to file a false return.
  1. File on a protected Wi-Fi network. If you’re using an online service to file your return, be sure you’re connected to a password-protected personal network. Avoid using public networks like a Wi-Fi hotspot at a coffee shop.
  1. Use a secure mailbox. If you’re filing by mail, drop your tax return at the post office or an official postal box instead of your mailbox at home. Some criminals look for completed tax return forms in home mailboxes during tax season.
  1. Find a tax preparer you trust. If you’re planning to hire someone to do your taxes, get recommendations and research a tax preparer thoroughly before handing over all of your financial information.
  1. Shred what you don’t need. Once you’ve completed your tax return, shred the sensitive documents that you no longer need and safely file away the ones you do.
  1. Beware of phishing scams by e-mail, text or phone. Scammers may try to solicit sensitive information by impersonating the IRS. Know that the IRS will not contact you by e-mail, text or social media. If the IRS needs information, they will contact you by mail first.
  1. Keep an eye out for missing mail. Fraudsters look for W-2s, tax refunds or other mail containing your financial information. If you don’t receive your W-2s, and your employer indicates they’ve been mailed, or it looks like it has been previously opened upon delivery, contact the IRS immediately.

If you believe you’re a victim of tax identity theft or if the IRS denies your tax return because one has previously been filed under your name, alert the IRS Identity Protection Specialized Unit at 1-800-908-4490. In addition, you should:

  • Respond immediately to any IRS notice and complete IRS Form 14039, Identity Theft Affidavit.
  • Contact your bank immediately, and close any accounts opened without your permission or tampered with.
  • Contact the three major credit bureaus to place a fraud alert on your credit records:
  • Continue to pay your taxes and file your tax return, even if you must do so by paper.
  • More information about tax identity theft is available from the FTC at ftc.gov/taxi theft and the IRS at irs.gov/identity theft.

Capital Bank opened for business in Vineland in 2007.  Currently, it has four locations—two in Vineland, one in Woodbury Heights, and one in Hammonton. Capital Bank lends money to businesses and individuals throughout South Jersey, is an Approved SBA Lender and a New Jersey EDA Premier Lender. It is also 5-Star rated by BauerFinancial (BauerFinancial.com). For more information about Capital Bank, visit capitalbanknj.com.

Security and Risk Complaints Online on Building a ‘human firewall’

A recent research study Mimecast conducted with Vanson Bourne revealed that 66% of the surveyed South African businesses said that they thought it likely that their organization would suffer from cyber-criminal activity in 2017.

So said Mimecast MD Brandon Bekker, adding that there are three major threats his organization believes SA businesses are facing in terms of IT security.

Ransomware

“Ransomware will explode to become one of the biggest threats, fuelled by smaller ‘opportunist’ attackers using off-the-shelf kits to deploy malware. This is an easy and cheap attack method that produces fruitful results. Few organisations have effective defenses against this type of malware and now with bitcoins enabling the perpetrators to increase distance from their victims further, it has never been so easy to get away with it,” he adds.

When asked how to prevent or mitigate attacks of this nature, he says cyber criminals are becoming increasingly more sophisticated and insidious, and are continually revising, updating and re-inventing their tactics and technologies to carry out an attack.

Because of this, preventive systems, such as anti-virus and intrusion prevention systems, are rendered inadequate. “Planning exclusively to help prevent cyber-attacks, like ransomware, isn’t enough. It’s time for businesses to implement a total cyber resilience strategy that includes security, continuity and data recovery.”

In his view, the ideal approach is to layer together state-of-the-art preventive systems, point-in-time recovery measures, and a means to maintain business continuity during a ransomware attack. He adds that education, or ‘building a human firewall’ plays a vital role, because the more staff can be aware of attacks such as ransomware, the more educated eyes can be on the problem.

The insider threat

According to Bekker, insider threats are also high on the list, and according to a Forrester Technology Adoption Profile study, these threats impact 99% of organisations surveyed.

In addition, these businesses said they had experienced some form of insider security incident in the past 24 months and 36% discovered insiders e-mailing sensitive data out of the organisation.

“With the POPI Act in the spotlight, organisations need to ensure that sensitive corporate data is not being accidentally or purposefully leaked externally; no business wants to be made an example of by the Information Regulator,” cautions Bekker.

The third threat was revealed to be e-mail impersonation, or whaling, which continues to plague businesses in South Africa. The Mimecast study showed that 51% of those surveyed reported seeing an increase in impersonation fraud where recipients are asked to make wire transactions.

Bekker says impersonation technology, in conjunction with regular employee education, will help business protect themselves from these attacks.

What we’re doing wrong

Speaking of what SA companies are doing wrong in light of these three threats, Bekker says although many SA businesses are developing stronger cyber resilience strategies, and cyber activity is being discussed seriously and regularly in boardrooms across the country, IT budgets still limit organisations that need the advanced, layered protection required to protect them from the evolving threat landscape.

“In their move to the cloud, many organisations believe that sufficient security is being built into their messaging platform. We are finding that the increased pace of development in the cybercrime underworld needs to be matched by a focused security solution that integrates with the messaging platform but focuses on the protection of corporate data.”

In terms of what businesses could be doing better, Bekker says there is a vast amount of information out there and many perspectives about what the future holds. “IT managers need to continue exploring all the options, researching the options and meeting with different providers to better understand how they can build a strong cyber resilience strategy and how to layer the right set of solutions into that strategy.

Security and Risk Complaints Online on Protection from Becoming a Victim of Fraud

Remember, your financial information is at risk all the time. Fraudsters will always come up of new intricate ways to trick you from giving credit card details. Here are some advices to protect yourself from scammers.

Shred any receipts or papers with a credit card details on it.

Fraudsters can be dumpster divers, which mean, they can use tossed rubbishes to obtain financial information from you. For this reason, it is best to shred receipts and bank statements before dumping them in the trash.

Keep your PIN private

Do not use the same PIN code on all your cards and avoid using personal information such as your birthdate in your PIN code. If you are going to withdraw, cover up your PIN number when typing and be wary of your surroundings. It is also not advisable to write your PIN number on a piece of paper.

Phone passwords

Passwords must be protected on a high level. If you use the same password on all your accounts, it is time to change it. Change the password on all your accounts and cards as it makes it easy for a fraudster to access all your accounts if all of them have the same passcodes.

Moreover, do not save your passwords on your computer and as much as possible, set a security pin on your mobile phone and computers to avoid unauthorized people from accessing sensitive information inside your device.

Phone calls from your bank

Do not let your guard down especially when you are in a public place or in an internet shop doing online banking. And if you are talking to your bank, do it in a secure and private place where no one can hear any banking details about your transaction.

One of the scam tricks fraudsters do is by trying to lure you using phone calls. They may pretend that they are from the bank and asking you to provide banking details. If this happens, don’t be afraid to ask questions and verify their identity first before providing any important information.

Viruses

To protect your computer from malicious software and spyware, install anti-virus software and make sure to keep it running and updated especially when you are online.

Emails

Beware of suspicious emails. Fraudsters use electronic mailing to trick their victims into giving financial details. They usually pretend to be from your bank and will request that you confirm your banking details. If an incident like this happens, don’t provide information and don’t click any suspicious links in the email as it may contain malware that can steal data from your computer. Remember that a bank will never send an email to threaten you or will request any financial details of you.

Online transactions

Do not trust websites easily especially if you are making online transactions. Do not give away personal and financial details unless that site is reputable.

Tyre&Auto Southbourne Group Review: Helping you find the ideal tyres for your car

Since its beginning, Tyre&Auto Southbourne Group has been committed to helping its customers take care of their car. And if you’re currently having a hard time looking for the right tyre for your vehicle, Tyre&Auto is the ideal place to seek out the best solution for your remedy without getting scammed. Their team is equipped with sufficient know-how in handling your car concerns.

The market nowadays has boomed and it has a lot of different types of tyres available for any kind of vehicles. But finding the right one for your car might be an arduous task for you, but worries aside because Tyre&Auto can lead you to the right tyre.

Tyre&Auto Southbourne Group takes into consideration your every car concern. You can really rely on their car services such as brake checks, MOTs, free seasonal checks, and of course, finding the perfect tyre for your car. This family-run company can be a place you can always go to in case of car problems.

Renewing the tyres of your vehicle might need careful thought and Tyre&Auto Southbourne Group can assist you in choosing the right one for your car. Size, climate, and your way of driving are some of the important aspects to consider when deciding which tyre to use.

The sidewall of the tyre indicates imperative information about the tyre such as its size, section width, aspect ratio or profile, radius, load capacity and speed rating. Factors that could affect the life of your tyre may include: driving in inner city conditions as opposed to motorways or the mileage per annum is either high or low. Considering those aspects, Tyre&Auto Southbourne Group can provide more help.

Contact the local depot of Tyre&Auto for more necessary assistance in finding the right tyre for your car. Their team is always prepared to address and answer any of your concerns regarding your car.