Voice of the Industry

Sibos 2019 - talking serious business

Friday 4 October 2019 09:58 CET | Author Melisande Mual | Voice of the industry

Sibos 2019 was about instant payments, data, security, artificial intelligence, machine learning, Open Banking, and regulatory compliance

The financial services and payments conference Sibos organised by SWIFT hit London last week. More than 11,000 delegates have flooded into ExCeL London for an opportunity to stay ahead of the curve with the latest thinking about global finance. Banks, fintechs, corporates, solution providers, market infrastructures, technology providers, dreamers, doer, believers, thinkers, insightful sessions, good coffee, impressive booths, comfy lounge areas and private meeting rooms – that was Sibos 2019 in a nutshell.

It was an excellent opportunity to meet experts and be at the core of so many relevant recent developments in the payments and banking industry: SWIFT, Western Union, Features Analytics, Nationwide, Nilixa Devlukia (Open Banking and regulatory payments expert), Scott Farrell (Partner at King & Wood Mallesons), Ron Berndsen (Professor of Financial Market Infrastructures and Systemic Risk at Tilburg University), Form3, Banking Circle, ClearBank, BPC Banking Technologies, Pelican, nanopay, Finastra, Fiserv, Bottomline, Mastercard, Bankifi, Bain & Company, BNY Mellon, Nordea, Ripple, LexisNexis Risk Solutions, Token, Tieto, EastNets, equensWorldline, Volante Technologies, Accenture, CurrencyCloud, ANZ, Accuity, Identitii, Newgen, Tas Group, Featurespace, SmartStream, Montran, Vitesse PSP, Bud, Inpay, Allevo, Coconet, Intix, Know Your Customer, Mindgate, Trulioo, Fiorano Software, NTT Data, Comply Advantage.

The presentations covered a wide range of topics and the networking opportunities coupled with on-site news announcements resulted in an accurate pulse of the payments and banking ecosystem in September 2019. Here are some key takeaways below and, because images (and video, moreover) always speak louder than words, please also refer to the videos section for more insights from Sibos 2019.

Change is coming

There have been discussions about the changes that will take place in 2020 – such as the move to the new global messaging standard, ISO 20022. According to SWIFT, ISO 20022 is becoming the new global standard language for financial transactions. In the next five years it will be the main language for high-value payments, supporting 80% of the volume and 89% of the value of transactions worldwide, as major market infrastructures prepare to adopt the standard by 2021.

Banks around the world are looking closely at what they need to do to move to the standard and how they will do it. They must understand the scope of changes, communicate the value of those changes internally, establish governance, organise project teams and plan for the change in upcoming years. 

Regarding timelines, the four-year transition period, starting in November 2021, is designed to provide sufficient time for market participants to ensure readiness and implement ISO 20022 before completion of the global transition by November 2025.

It will be interesting to see how ISO 20022 will also help banks operate in the context of Open Banking and Application Programming Interfaces (API).

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Instant is the key – to everything that matters

As the payments landscape is changing, banks now need to balance their customer demands for speed with regulatory demands for financial crime and risk controls. The focus should also be on improving the customer experience in instant payments.

There was a lot of discussion around how the payments landscape is likely to change in the future with regards to compliant, real-time payments. Real-time payments must be at the heart of innovation, and this requires the creation of resilience, future-proofing and an ability to use the data that is created from payments transactions. There is a huge opportunity to lower costs for the customer with real-time payments and this can be achieved by involving non-banking players (fintechs and tech companies) in the innovation process.

Moreover, more needs to be done to educate customers, so that they embark on the faster payments journey.

Cybersecurity and fraud prevention

Real-time screening of payment and the need to place security and fraud prevention at the core of real-time payments and data management were key themes at Sibos this year.

The threat landscape has changed in recent years, cybercrime is becoming more mainstream, sophisticated and widespread; therefore, financial organisations need to manage their digital transformation, all while defending against cybercrime.

The effective use of data, machine learning, and artificial intelligence are becoming a valuable tool for payments companies and financial institutions to reduce fraud in all environments, as phishing techniques are getting more sophisticated.

Open Banking, please (and getting the data right)

The dynamics of banking are also indisputably shifting. There was also a call for banks to redefine business models and deliver new value to customers. Open Banking will form part of this evolution, however, due to lack of trust and knowledge, banks need to educate both business customers and consumers about its benefits. Imran Gulamhuseinwala, Trustee of the Open Banking Implementation Entity, predicts that 2020 will be the year of Open Banking, suggesting that innovation can help to address many of the issues that face banks today.

There was also excitement around APIs and their power to deliver new methods of transferring data across organisations. However, there is a need to develop common application programmable interfaces (APIs). Tony McLaughlin, who works in Emerging Payments and Business Development at Citi, encouraged the global banking community to develop common standards and standard APIs. Crucial to this will be the analysis of smart data to enable new products and services to improve customer experience. Getting the data right, as Imran names it.

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Eye on the future

For payments, 2020 looms large and the future feels more exciting than ever. Stay tuned for Sibos 2020 and be sure to follow The Paypers on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and subscribe to our newsletter for updates!

We hope to see you at Sibos in Boston next year!

About Oana Ifrim

vspace=4Oana Ifrim is Senior Editor at The Paypers and explores topics spanning B2B payments, supply chain finance e-invoicing, and related subjects and topics. She is a passionate observer of banking innovation, Open Banking, and fintech - always keen to identify and understand how new technologies and digital strategies and solutions are shaping the future of banking. Oana holds a Master’s degree in American Studies.


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Keywords: Sibos 2019, instant payments, data, security, artificial intelligence, machine learning, Open Banking, regulatory compliance
Categories: Banking & Fintech | Payments General
Payments & Commerce | Payments General
Securing Transactions | Payments General
Securing Transactions | Payments General
Countries: World
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