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Weekly Analysis & Opinion Highlights – 21 December 2020

This analysis & opinion piece explores the latest trends and expert voices from the fintech industry. We look at the aftermath of the SolarWinds cyberattacks, select the latest tech trend predictions for 2021, explore how banks adopt digital innovations, understand the importance of data and its ramifications for the fintech sector and not only, see what cybersecurity measures firms undertake during the current pandemic climate, explore why UK, UK & European regulators are diving into market data prices, and further dive into the consequences of the pending Brexit regulations and what it will all mean for fintech. 

Enjoy the material!

What is the verdict on last week’s SolarWinds cyberattacks?

SolarWinds hackers have a clever way to bypass multi-factor authentication (Ars Technica)

After last week’s series of hacker attacks on multiple software vendors, such as Microsoft, Dan Goodin, Security Editor at Ars Technica, explains the consequences of the hack. The hackers behind the supply chain attack that compromised public and private organizations managed to bypass multi-factor-authentication systems protecting the networks they target. In addition, according to research conducted by security firm Volexity, the same attackers were encountered in late 2019 and early 2020, when they penetrated deep inside of a think tank organization no fewer than three times. Read more

2021 tech trends…

The Top Five Strategic Technology Trends for 2021 The Year of Digitalism (Datafloq)

According to Dr Mark van Rijmenam, founder of Datafloq and Mavin, there are five prominent trends to be expected in 2021 for the tech sector. As such, digitalism is expected to stay and rapidly expand, the final verdict on whether antitrust laws to protect consumers can be trusted will be reached, quantum computing and neural networks are believed to make a big impact, DeFi and digital currencies will most likely explode, and confidential computing will protect our data. Read more

The banking sector and digital innovations outlook…

2020 – A shock to the system for the banking industry (FinTech Futures)

In an interview conducted by Alex Hamilton, Deputy Editor at FinTech Futures, together with James Buckley, vice president and Europe director for Infosys Finacle, the rapid adoption of new innovations by the banking industry is discussed. Buckley emphasizes the impact of Covid-19 on the financial industry, which forced banks to carefully consider their resources and costs: “This year has caused a shock to the banking industry. Banks have realised they must look at where they’re at and what their cost structures are in a much more considered way.” Buckley expects that the first two quarters of 2021 will see an increase in fintech activity. Read more

The role of data beyond finance…

Data in the changing payments landscape and the role of ISO 20022 (Finextra)

Akhil Rao, Director of Nth Exception, claims that data is becoming significantly more essential for the payments industry each day. Besides its primary functions of ensuring customer security and innovations of the system, data is also a catalyst for emerging technologies and the RegTech sector. Furthermore, improving the quality of the data enables the industry to drive value more easily from emerging technologies like Artificial Intelligence (AI) and DLT, further driving automation and preventing the illicit use of the global financial system. Read more

Cybersecurity tightens up for the financial industry…

Emerging Cybersecurity Challenges And Solutions In The Finance Sector (Finance Monthly)

Rob May, Managing Director and founder of ramsac, analyzes the latest security threats for businesses and solutions to overcome these issues. A recurring issue that the analysis warns cybersecurity managers is to be aware of malware breach systems. Furthermore, misinformation can accentuate what seems like harmless advice on stock investments, and actually drive malicious activity. Read more

UK, UK & European regulators are diving into market data prices…

Regulators Continue Reviews Of Market Data Pricing, Little Action (Forbes)

Tom Groenfeldt, finance and technology writer at Forbes, explains why investment firms, traders and hedge funds are pursuing US, UK and European regulators to take a closer look at market data prices and practices. “The new fees for historical data are a clear misuse of power by the exchange and a radical departure from long-standing practices of all other major exchanges, including the ICE USA, Eurex, Euronext, and Nasdaq OMX Nordic exchanges,” Exchange Data International (EDI) said based on their findings. Read more

More on Brexit & fintech…

Risk rise in pandemic-hit fintech sector (

Selwyn Parker, journalist at, explores in-depth the consequences of Brexit for the fintech sector. At the top of the list lies cyber security, with increased risks posed by Brexit, such as client’s money, identity and other personal details. As Mastercard reports, fintech is the biggest target of cyber attacks after healthcare. Another pressing issue regards the climate-friendly behaviour of fintech firms, which is no longer optional, as regulations steadily tighten, like the EU’s imminent rules on sustainable finance (SDFR). The new regulation, actively imposed from March 2021, will affect all products marketed into the EU. Read more

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