What businesses need to consider as cryptocurrency becomes more common
Despite their growing popularity,
cryptocurrencies have received their fair share of criticism over the years.
Cryptocurrencies first entered the market a decade ago, and they pose a real threat to national currencies,
considered “one of government’s longest-standing and most important
monopolies,” according to the National Review. That’s because cryptocurrency
doesn’t require a middleman or central authority, such as a bank or financial
institution, and all transaction files are publicly visible.
Therefore, cryptocurrencies have the
advantages of transparency and immutability, which traditional fiat currencies lack. Although
cryptocurrency may help streamline transactions when the buyer and seller are
in different locations, digital currency databases are also vulnerable to
hacking and market volatility. Every business that’s considering the usage of
cryptocurrency should be aware of the downsides of the technology, as well as
Accepting cryptocurrency may increase your
client base, and even attract a more diverse, global subset of customers. Thus,
business owners throughout the world, especially in Latin America where the use
of cryptocurrency is becoming increasingly widespread, should consider
accepting or investing in the financial medium.
Depending on your financial stability and the
business or services your company provides, you could even create your own form
of cryptocurrency or fintech. If your business is already invested in some sort
of DevOps culture, perhaps you’re ready to delve into the world of digital
currency. Here’s what your business should consider if you want to jump on the
Future-casting and your cryptocurrency plans
Of course, some countries have embraced
cryptocurrency at a faster rate than others. According to a 2019 Statista poll, cryptocurrency ownership is most common in Turkey,
with about 20% of the population reportedly utilizing some type of crypto.
Rounding out the top five countries for cryptocurrency usage are Argentina, Columbia,
Brazil, and South Africa.
If your business is based in one of those
countries, or you conduct business with their citizens, you may want to include
cryptocurrency in future business plans. In order to stay ahead of the
competition, the practice of future-casting may be integral to your success.
Using predictive analytics to evaluate industry dynamics and relevant trends,
you can strategically plan out the future of your business. And cryptocurrency
should be included in those future plans, no matter your industry.
But cryptocurrency can’t stand on its own:
Cryptocurrency and artificial intelligence go hand-in-hand, and AI tech is
certainly poised to impact the digital currency market. Along with allowing for
safe, instantaneous cryptocurrency transactions, AI will drive and transform other aspects of finance into the future. For example, AI will help simplify the supplier onboarding
process, as well as improve the accuracy and efficiency of digital audits.
Implementing cryptocurrency security measures
One glaring downside of cryptocurrency that
business owners should be aware of is the technology’s public nature. Privacy
concerns are widespread in the world of fintech, as hackers exploit the
anonymity of crypto and blockchain to evade government oversight, among other
unscrupulous activities. The vulnerability of cryptocurrency is so concerning
that the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) has become
involved in the oversight of digital currency.
Established in 1989 to help combat money laundering, FATF
is a global conglomerate that also helps businesses to understand the inherent
culpability of virtual assets, including cryptocurrency. As the technology is
relatively new, there are numerous scams related to
cryptocurrency, especially among less tech-savvy users. Individuals and
businesses alike should perform thorough research before conducting any
transaction using digital currency, and always check seller feedback before
making a trade.
To help keep your company and customer data safe when utilizing digital channels, you may want to enlist a private security company. At the very least, you should have at minimum basic knowledge of the most vulnerable spots for a data breach in the realm of cybersecurity. Point-of-sale (POS) systems are the most culpable when it comes to security, accounting for more than 28% of data breach incidents. Your business may also be vulnerable to cyber espionage and/or privilege misuse, where sensitive data is leaked or shared by unscrupulous employees.
Cryptocurrency in the modern business landscape
The threat of data breaches notwithstanding,
cryptocurrency offers myriad possibilities, whatever the mission of your
company. By accepting cryptocurrency, businesses of all sizes can increase
their bottom line and customer base. Purchases are completed instantaneously,
meaning that you don’t have to wait for payments, and allowing you to ship
products in an expedient manner.
As cryptocurrency technology is still young
and evolving, it comes with a small amount of risk. Those risks are easily
mitigated, however, if you develop a basic understanding of how cryptocurrency
works. You can then build up protection against cryptocurrency hackers and
reduce your chances of falling for digital currency scams.
Interestingly, cryptocurrency hasn’t gotten
much attention in the legal arena, even as governments remain threatened by the
freely traded currency. In fact, the first law involving digital currency is set to
take effect in January 2020, and it’s technically aimed at cryptography rather than
cryptocurrency itself. But more laws and regulations are likely to follow, so
businesses that are embracing the technology should stay updated on digital
currency-related news across the globe.