Monday, October 5, 2020

Why Low-code Development Matters?

Developers were afraid when the low-code platform market first started to expand. They worried that their work would be replaced by low-code platforms and had concerns that they were not fit to perform mission-critical tasks. However, in reality, most low-code platforms are very reliable with regard to helping developers respond quickly and in helping them be more agile.

Here are a few reasons why low-code development has become even more relevant and may even reach far beyond mobile.

Picture source: Pexels


Offering simplicity and convenience

Leading transformational initiatives is important given today's business environment climate. Nevertheless, IT teams are spread thin. They handle dynamic IT environments while serving business lines, developers, security and, more and more, remote employees.

That's where creation with low-code will benefit. Using a drag-and-drop interface to organise data and logic elements, a low-code framework helps corporate users to be citizen developers and easily build custom applications, according to one's requirement and departmental system . It lets them get the knowledge they need quickly to solve business challenges and innovate to better satisfy consumer needs. At the same time, development teams can concentrate on more nuanced strategies for change that involve their specific skill sets.


Speed to market

In the past, it was difficult just to find a software engineer. For start-up founders and business teams alike, IT-related skills shortages have remained an issue because they simply lack a supply of healthy, available engineering talent. Low-code/no-code solutions circumvent this issue by letting anyone create his or her own MVP, regardless of technical competence.

Building your own product (as opposed to outsourcing it) can yield so many advantages. Owners know specifically how the brand works from start to finish. Leaders are now self-sufficient as they can now make improvements on their own instead of having to frame their dilemma in terms of laymen and outsource it to their developer team to fix bugs. These improved processes not only de-risk products but also potentially allow the total number of goods being produced to rise exponentially.


Empowering remote work efforts

Ever since the chaotic disruption of COVID-19, forced work-at-home efforts are on the rise, and Information Technology teams have been cast down a steep learning curve that entails communication initiatives, digital security, and a million other facets to keep things running. There's immense pressure on everyone across the board, and the end-users are ultimately the ones that could suffer.

Fortunately, the demand for low-code/no-code solutions is on the rise. 

In the start-up and disruptive technology industries, low-code/no-code strategies are particularly common, promoting individuals with little to no coding expertise to be able to develop the applications they want at the time it is required.

Business agility has likely never been more critical than it is now. A global transition to remote work has impacted resource availability.

Low-code acceleration of project execution helps enterprises to solve problems efficiently in a modern operating environment. For example, it offers tools for creating stopgap solutions for efficient resource planning, remote team management, and task tracking.

Another reason to think about agility is full-stack as well as cross-platform app growth. Low-code helps build numerous applications, like multi-device apps. As a result, enterprises are motivated to implement new digital strategies. These strategies can impact digital customer onboarding and so much more. 


In-line with other powerful tools

For brilliant application services, you may be equipped with brilliant ideas, but you will need to execute them stunningly quick and with the right consistency. It can only get you so far if you have to rely on classic software delivery focused on manual labour, complicated programming languages and months of preparation. Constructing software without tremendous feats of coding is now simpler than it previously was. The secret lies in powerful AI-enabled tools that allow full use of API catalogues, pre-built templates, and automation.


Improving development efficiency

For development teams forced to turn around sprints and tasks at lightning speed, low-code platforms are extremely useful. Although hand-coding still has its place, low-code solutions improve efficiency by automating both simple and complex tasks, helping dev teams to work faster and smarter. Both development, as well as business teams, benefit particularly from low-code platforms because they are more cost-effective and place a lighter operating workload on development and IT teams since suppliers manage hosting and maintenance, even alleviating the burden of IT backlogs.

The speed of release is quickening. All businesses face the need, across the board, to automate their internal operations. Companies, among other things, require workflow automation for form creation, data retrieval and usable apps powered by databases. With the focus on quick, continuous-release techniques, the advent of next-gen low-code tools runs parallel. New UX layers that cater to citizen developers enable more players to accept DevOps within an enterprise and allow faster deployments.


Thursday, September 24, 2020

Why Were You Asked to Capture a Selfie Photo When Doing Online ID Verification?

With the current COVID-19 global pandemic crisis and the progress of digital adoption initiatives around the globe, businesses are feeling the brunt of the force. This is in line with a barrage of new practices moving forward. In line with the rise of facets of the new norm, low-touch and physical distancing practices, online ID verification technology is being used more frequently. 

In fact, capabilities for digital verification (including those related to the recognition of faces) are being relied on as companies, retailers, service providers, and brands seek to bring convenience, safety and speed to their online processes and transactions. 

With that being said, there may be some people who still wonder about the significance of capturing their selfies and identity cards when signing up to a digital platform. Is it safe to share selfies online?


Photo source: pexels


There are two main methods of facial ID capturing

For the most part, facial verification standards often require users to submit a selfie of themselves as part and parcel of the ID verification process. There are two frequently used methods for this. The first method is to upload a photo of a selfie, and the second method is to upload a photo of yourself holding your identity document. 

For manual verification process through eyeballing, the second method is the recommended implementation option because it is much more unlikely that hackers can find a victim's portrait photo in this pose readily available from social media profiles or other internet sources. On the other hand, the first method (capturing a selfie from a live camera) is a good option too when the facial verification process is automated with technology. Often, the facial sighting automation would require liveness detection capability to be built as part of the automation, either through the approach of:

i. active liveness detection (require subject to explicitly follow through some prompts such as face feature movements), or
ii. passive (without requiring any explicit movement).

Essentially, the purpose of capturing a customer’s selfie during self-service registration is to:

1. Prevent identity fraud/theft, such as misuse of someone else’s ID
2. Capture user’s consent
3. Enhance user’s account security
4. An added layer of security

Monday, September 21, 2020

Banks Should Turn to Using AI in eKYC in the Digital Arms Race

This article first appeared in Fintech News Malaysia, authored by Vincent Fong. 


There’s an old joke on how on the internet nobody knows that you’re a dog, which speaks to how the internet has become synonymous with anonymity. While anonymity is fine in many instances, in an increasingly digital world it has become crucial that you are who you say you are.

Nowhere is this more critical than in the financial services space, where banks are required to ensure that your funds are lawfully gained and are not channeled to some nefarious activity. For the longest time banks in Malaysia required you to show up in the branch physically to conduct a face to face KYC.

All that has changed, when in June 2020, Bank Negara Malaysia released its much-anticipated guidelines for eKYC in Malaysia. The policy document was created in recognition of the importance of digital identity as an enabler for user convenience and cost efficiency for financial institutions.  As such, the framework included guidelines for the use of AI and machine learning in identification and verification. AI is viewed by the regulator as a tool for “reducing human intervention”. 

Click here to continue reading the full article

Thursday, September 17, 2020

What Took Place When You Were Submitting an Online Form, Even When You Couldn't See It?

Ever wonder what happens when you submit an online application or fill out a form over the internet and hit the send button? These days, almost every inquiry, registration and submission can be processed digitally. eCommerce sites, service platforms and mobile apps incorporate online submissions in one way or another whether as a part of digital customer onboarding, customer support or troubleshooting. From a developer's standpoint, there are various methods, tactics and approaches when building form submission funnels, but there are certain key elements to consider.


Source: Pexels


Essentially, the purpose of online forms is to collect specific data about a website visitor such as for processing as part of a service subscription or for a college application among other things. 

In most cases, you'll probably find a relatively simple contact form containing fields for the kinds of details to be filled in (such as name, email address and phone number). Once you click submit, the next thing that happens is invisible to you as the applicant. Although you may not see it, there is an infrastructure in place to ensure that your data gets to where it's supposed to.


Data is Stored in a Submissions Storage

These days, many websites use an external service or system that helps to store all the data that's extracted from submitted forms. Form submissions might often contain the private information of website visitors or rather, potential clients, so the utmost priority for these service providers is ensuring that data is safely transferred and stored for later use by the respective site. Private data should not end up being published on the front end of sites for others to see and, for the most part, all authentic sources abide by this rule. Most sites will state this in some shape or form in their terms and conditions - so it would be a good idea to read through their sections. Numerous established form submission services help sites to securely store data. Security is likely to be a prominent value proposition for all of them.

Data collection systems are extremely crucial for many businesses online and are central to the customer onboarding process in most cases. Data collection systems help teams collect a standard set of information and allow companies to keep control and consistency as they collect data from their sites. These systems also help to organize the constant stream of data that pours in. This is why so many sites incorporate data collection systems, which are directly connected to the forms that visitors fill. Security and privacy are big parts of these systems, and many of the available third party data collection providers out there strive to accommodate businesses and consumers alike.

Monday, August 10, 2020

What is Digital Signing and How Does it Benefit Businesses?

The rise of the digital signature has revolutionized finance, and real estate sectors, as well as commercial and industrial enterprises. This is likely to be happening even more now that contactless transactions, social distancing and digital adoption are all traits of the new norm amid COVID-19. 

Digital signatures are ways to verify your identity on an electronic file (like a sales contract). They work with encryption technology, so you're the only person that can use any electronic file to access your unique encryption. Using tech for digital signatures can be part of system modernization and a larger, overall digital strategy. Some have adopted the technology while others remain skeptical. Either way, digital signatures have measurable benefits, like most technological advances, as well as associated costs and risks.



Electronic signatures (e-signatures) and digital signatures are not the same

e-signatures are notoriously susceptible to fraud because they are essentially just electronic symbols, processes or sounds attached to documents to represent a form of assent or agreement. A digital image of a handwritten signature can easily be captured on a smartphone or tablet before being pasted back into a document. Without any encrypted authentication process to reinforce security, e-signatures aren't able to determine the identity of a human operator who last used the signature.

On the other hand, digital signatures are reinforced with higher levels of security and advanced technology to assure optimal safety for documents. They are often built on Public Key Infrastructure (PKI), which is used to generate unique "digital fingerprints" through mathematical algorithms. These digital fingerprints are then safely embedded in the documents, and signers will have to perform 2-Factor Authentication measures to confirm legitimate identities.

What's more, the digital IDs of each legitimate signer can only be issued by an accredited CA (authorised bodies empowered by the government to issue digital IDs for evaluated individuals). In essence, each signer is legally permitted to use these generated signatures. 

Prioritizing authenticity

Digital signing is generally made up of a simple process. Users simply upload their documents and take simple steps to set up the necessary signatures. An automated process prompts the signatories via a mobile app or email, which leads to the creation of a highly secure and convenient digital signature on the respective document.

Monday, July 27, 2020

e-KYC Concept Enhances Secured Financial Services for Customers

This article first appeared in The Malaysian Reserve, authored by Nur Hanani Azman.

Photo by Nafis Abman from Pexels


Electronic Know-Your-Customer (e-KYC) concept is the new buzzword for banks, financial services and insurance industry that looks into giving more secured financial services for customers.

Thanks to the e-KYC policy and guidelines by Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) and Securities Commission Malaysia (SC), more players are actively taking part in this sector in Malaysia.

“There are many areas that will involve e-KYC or online identification (ID) verification in banking, financial services and insurance (BFSI), from account opening to financing facility application, investment account activation and e-banking/mobile banking activation,” said Innov8tif Solutions Sdn Bhd COO Law Tien Soon.

Founded in 2011, Innov8tif is an artificial intelligence (AI) company helping businesses to widen sales funnel, speed-up processes without paper and prevent frauds.

Law said with the rising cases of SMS one-time password (OTP) frauds, it is evident that SMS OTP isn’t necessarily the best second-factor authentication method.

Facial biometrics which is a part of e-KYC registration is the most secure method to protect customer’s identity and assets.

Law highlighted that from their experience of serving eight telecommunication companies (telcos) in Malaysia, telco is the first industry to have benefitted from digital ID verification — 24/7 realtime customer onboarding made possible.

Thursday, July 23, 2020

What are the Differences between Digital Banking and Virtual Banking?

Digital disruption has impacted the world’s financial landscape, as well as other facets of society. Digital automation may become even more common in the years to come. 

In the midst of a ferocious pandemic, economic and health-related pressures have stirred innovation towards the reinforcement of banking processes for both individuals and businesses. 

Fintech can be found at the center of this trend, and major financial institutions are beginning to make way for smaller, more uniquely positioned, and more agile fintech solution providers. 

Partnerships, pivots and added offerings have unraveled concepts that push convenience, speed and digital integration to the forefront. Among these concepts are digital banking and virtual banking. They may seem similar, however, these two concepts have major differences. 


Virtual banks are fully online



The key difference to remember between digital and virtual banks is that virtual banks are made up of financial services and processes that exist solely online. By its definition, virtual banks don't rely on branch offices or any other forms of physical presence to resume operations. For the most part, interested applicants need to download a mobile banking app if they want to open a bank account under a virtual banking service. You'll need to submit your details and complete various security checks through an online platform before being assigned a fully virtual account. These online platforms are usually verified and offer protective measures to keep customer safety a top priority.

It isn't difficult to see that virtual banking stemmed from a booming demand of convenience and rapid speed, amid rising digital infrastructures as consumers grow more dependent on online transactions and ecommerce. The concept itself is relatively new - compared to some other financial innovations - eradicating the need for many burdens carried by traditional banks. There are no physical outlets, so expenses like rent, maintenance and workforce for individual branches are non-existent. Every process, inquiry, transaction and application is conducted via an online system, which translates to freedom and efficiency.


Digital banking may comprise physical aspects


Also known commonly as internet banking or online banking, digital banking is more of a blanket term that describes the added digital components to conventional banking processes. In this regard, digital banking has been around for quite some time now, with earlier forms involving logging into bank websites to check active accounts or complete transactions. The term itself can be seen as a predecessor which led to the eventual rise of virtual banking in its current form. For the most part, digital banking might require users to first head over to conventional bank branches and register physically. 



Some paperwork may be involved, and customers might have to complete their registration over the counter before they can access their online accounts. Of course, things have changed quite dramatically these days, and many traditional banks offer the option of creating online accounts from the comfort of your home. However, it's still necessary to create an active account with that bank - and that still requires you to head over to physical branches.

In mid-Jul 2020, CIMB Malaysia introduced an online-to-branch account opening process for individual banking customers, who can now submit their application to open a current or savings account online. Subsequently, they proceed to a dedicated e-account opening priority queue available in all the bank's branches to complete the application via Know-Your-Customer due diligence. 

Nowadays, digital banking is used more as a term to describe any banking activities which are conducted and completed through digital devices. Consumers are constantly using their phones to access saving apps or pay for products by scanning codes, while companies are used to paying salaries and expenses through banking apps online. By definition, these are all examples of digital banking.