How the Future of Finance Gives You Total Control

In the world of commerce, internet is king as it never sleeps and continues to take transactions long after you and I have laid to rest for the night. With the evolution of finance and online transactions the internet world has taken large steps to make it easier for the consumer and investor to feel more safe and secure with the funds which are being processed.

Remember when Paypal came on the scene? “E-commerce”? It was still like a toddler – wobbling across the room and making the grown-ups feel just a little nervous. Now it’s just commerce. People latched onto this new way of transacting and now it is one of the biggest modes of payment.

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Like Paypal, cryptocurrency has big potential. In 2009, Bitcoin launched onto this transactional scene and today, hot on its heels, enters Zen Protocol, a blockchain which is built for finance and completely erases the need for bankers and brokers.

What does this mean for you as a consumer or financial investor, and how does Zen Protocol make a good product even greater? I’m glad you asked. Let me give you the three tips why ZP is one of the hottest reasons you should get involved.

#1 – Safety and Security are Key

When you press the “BUY” button on your favorite clothing line do you pause and hope your financial information won’t be stolen?

I would wager the answer to that question is a “No”. You trust them. You’ve purchased from them before or know someone who has. Besides, their site has that little “s” at the beginning of the URL.

All joking aside, when it comes to cryptocurrency, security and safety is no joke with these guys. You may or may not have heard, but a few weeks ago over $150 million were permanently frozen on the Ethereum blockchain by what seems to have been a mistake. The cause: an Ethereum contract called “Parity multisig”, used by numerous individuals and organizations to store their funds, contained a simple bug.

Believe it or not, this was the second critical bug for this contract. Back in May, when the first flaw was discovered, some “white hat” hackers saved most of the tokens and returned them to their owners. Not this time.

Zen Protocol takes steps to solve the security and safety issue by making it easy to ensure the code actually works for you. It works with a language designed to prove what contracts do – a method called “formal verification”. It also makes simple transactions – like multisig – easy to do, without using special contracts.

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Trump administration pulls back curtain on secretive cybersecurity process

The White House on Wednesday made public for the first time the rules by which the government decides to disclose or keep secret software flaws that can be turned into cyberweapons — whether by U.S. agencies hacking for foreign intelligence, money-hungry criminals or foreign spies seeking to penetrate American computers.

The move to publish an un­classified charter responds to years of criticism that the process was unnecessarily opaque, fueling suspicion that it cloaked a stockpile of software flaws that the National Security Agency was hoarding to go after foreign targets but that put Americans’ cyber­security at risk.

“This is a really big improvement and an outstanding process,” said White House cybersecurity coordinator Rob Joyce, who spoke at an Aspen Institute event and issued a blog post on the charter.

By making it public, he said, “we hope to demonstrate to the American people that the federal government is carefully weighing the risks and benefits” of disclosure vs. retention.

The rules are part of the “Vulnerabilities Equities Process,” which the Obama administration revamped in 2014 as a multi­agency forum to debate whether and when to inform companies such as Microsoft and Juniper that the government has discovered or bought a software flaw that, if weaponized, could affect the security of their product.

The Trump administration has mostly not altered the rules under which the government reaches a decision but is disclosing its process. Under the VEP, an “equities review board” of at least a dozen national security and civilian agencies will meet monthly — or more often, if a need arises — to discuss newly discovered vulnerabilities. Besides the NSA, the CIA and the FBI, the list includes the Treasury, Commerce and State departments, and the Office of Management and Budget.

The priority is on disclosure, the policy states, to protect core Internet systems, the U.S. economy and critical infrastructure, unless there is “a demonstrable, overriding interest” in using the flaw for intelligence or law enforcement purposes.

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HDFC Bank offers virtual accounts to PayZapp users

HDFC Bank will soon start offering digital savings bank accounts, credit cards and instant loans to users of its PayZapp app. The bank also plans to enrol additional merchants for acceptance of electronic payments to increase its present network of 1.2 million shops to 5 million in 18 months.

PayZapp, which was launched two years ago, has more than 14 million users. Over half of these are young users who do not have a bank account. “We are marrying a lot of our strategies by integrating changes that are happening in the market into our own business activity.

HDFC Bank is already a scale player in cards and loan assets. We will use our digital back-end strengths in these businesses to bring more scale into PayZapp,” said Parag Rao, group head for marketing, credit cards and payments business.

According to Rao, PayZapp has the potential to become a 50-million customer franchise with capability for instantly opening accounts and offering credit cards and loans.

HDFC Bank is already the market leader in credit cards with over 1 crore in circulation. It currently issues 2.5 lakh new cards every month. The PayZapp platform is expected to take this to 5 lakh a month. The offered savings account will be a completely digital product and the credit cards virtual, with an option to receive the plastic version. The instant loans would be powered by fintech (financial technology). “Fintech lending is the new kid on the block, which has brought a different way of  sourcing customers for loans,” said Rao.

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How to Achieve the best Outcome in an Audit

An internal audit, as we all know, is carried out for a number of specific purposes, the main one among which is to assess the adherence to the industry guidelines for quality and processes. Helping the organization meet the requirements of processes and standards, which are usually issued by regulatory agencies and other relevant bodies and boards, is the main aim of an internal audit. An internal audit seeks to bring about quality through standardization of many of the processes that go into the product.

In the context of the food industry, this adherence is all the more important, because food contamination is quite a serious issue in all parts of the world. According to statistics from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC); about one in seven Americans, or close to fifty million, get sick from consuming contaminated food. More than an eighth of a million people get hospitalized for this reason, and some 3,000 people lose their lives due to food contamination in the US every year.

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The major challenge in food contamination is to identify the source of the contamination. Since we humans eat a variety of foods in our meals, it is difficult to zero in on the exact source. Our food is usually consumed in variety, and most of it is from different and varied sources. If all of our food were derived from just one source, this task would have become interminably easier. But this is not the case; hence, the problem in identifying the source of the food contamination.

Means for ensuring quality

An audit is a sure method of identifying and preventing food contamination. An audit is a continuous process that is planned, specified, and carried out at set intervals and documented to determine the quality of a product. A food audit does all this to food products. It adds strength to the process of preparing, distributing and consuming food, and provides confidence that the food that we consume meets the standards set out for its quality and safety and has gone through the prescribed processes. This is the essence of a food audit, and this is described as such by the Global Food Initiative.

The main aims of an internal audit for food are twofold:

Apart from helping a food facility to locate and set right issues pertaining to the Quality Management Systems; a food internal audit identifies a problem before it gets detected by an external audit, and rectifies it. Doing so at this stage will prevent the problem from reaching the end consumer. All these conditions can be met when the internal audit is objective, is done with commitment and conviction, reviews the quality programs, and is comprehensive.

  • An effective food internal audit also ensures that the facility is adapting and implementing quality systems, which leads to involving top management into making improvements over time.
  • The FDA, many regulatory agencies from around the world and the ISO –in the form of 19011, and to a lesser extent, the ISO 9001, 14001 and 22000 –all have standards for food safety. An internal food audit should ensure that these are being complied with.

Get complete understanding of internal food audits

All the finer aspects of an internal food audit will be explained in detail at a webinar that is being organized by Compliance4All, a leading provider of professional trainings for all the areas of regulatory compliance. At this webinar, the speaker is Ruth M Bell, a Food Safety/Quality and HACCP Management Consultant, Auditor and Trainer based in the UK.

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To derive the benefit of the deep and varied experience that Ruth Bell brings to food quality, food technology and food audits; please enroll for this webinar by visiting Food Technology for Non-Technologists

The purpose of this webinar is to provide Internal Auditors with an overview of the tools and information they need to carry out thorough and productive audits. Ruth will give them the knowledge of how to achieve the best outcome in an audit. The learning from this session will help internal auditors gain knowledge of:

  • What an audit is and why they’re carried out
  • The skills and qualities needed by an auditor
  • Audit documentation and preparation
  • Audit techniques
  • How to judge non-conformances

This is a session that is highly useful for those involved directly in food quality audits or those who work with them. These include HACCP Team Members, Technical Managers, Production Managers, Engineering Managers, and Consultants.

Although meant for internal auditors, those planning to become Internal Auditors in the food industry, and Consultants; the learning from this webinar will benefit just about anyone involved in the auditing process, be they auditees or supervisors.

Ruth will cover the following areas at this webinar:

  • Audit Process
  • Audit Preparation
  • Audit Techniques
  • Questioning Techniques
  • Non-Conformities and Corrective Action Close Out
  • Audit Follow-up and Close Out.

Relationship Between an EM Excursion Program and CAPA

The FDA’s regulations on cleanroom environmental monitoring (EM) are based on the assumption that any person who enters a cleanroom is likely and almost certain to have brought contaminants in one or another form with him. The FDA’s regulations on cleanroom environmental monitoring are built on the thinking that microorganisms can assail even the cleanest of systems, which is why its regulations on cleanroom environmental monitoring are stringent and scientific. The FDA proceeds on the thinking that nil contamination of not only cleanrooms, but all locations involved in aseptic processing is not possible.

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Based on this thinking, the FDA has formulated its guidelines on cleanroom EM taking into consideration the limitations of obtaining completely microorganism-free environment for cleanrooms. It seeks to bring about a consistent EM system that meets high environmental quality requirements all the time, being able to detect changes and deviations in this consistency level and bring the level to control limits.

Regulations that cover all areas of cleanroom environmental monitoring

Keeping this in mind, the FDA has formulated regulations that cover all aspects of cleanroom environmental monitoring, starting from the buildings and facilities, right up to the qualification and training required for personnel manning these cleanroom facilities to what should go into closures to validation of the aseptic processing and sterilization techniques. These cGMP regulations are found in 21 CFR Parts 210 and 211.

All the disciplines of cleanroom monitoring, such as quality, manufacturing, engineering, quality, environmental monitoring, sterilization and cleaning and many others need to be taken into full consideration while building an FDA-compliant monitoring program. These should be included all along, into all these phases:

  • Planning phase
  • Design phase
  • Construction phase
  • Commissioning phase
  • Qualification phase
  • Submission phase
  • Operational phase

A complete understanding of the FDA’s regulations

The ways of understanding and implementing the FDA’s regulations for environmental monitoring program will be the topic of a webinar that is being organized by Compliance4All, a leading provider of professional trainings for all the areas of regulatory compliance.

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The speaker at this webinar is Joy McElroy, who in over the 20 years of total experience she has had in the pharmaceutical and biotech industries has gained extensive knowledge of Quality Assurance, Process and Cleaning Validation, and Equipment Qualification. She has written and executed Equipment Qualification and Validation Protocols for numerous companies.

Want to learn the ways of understanding FDA regulations for environmental monitoring? Then, please register for this webinar by visiting

Ways of ensuring compliance

Joy will highlight the importance of compliance with the FDA regulations on environmental monitoring, as the costs of noncompliance are much more exorbitant than those of compliance. Participants who take part in this training will be able to get a proper grasp of how to implement a cleanroom Environmental Monitoring (EM) program that complies with the FDA’s regulations.

She will describe the basis of the four phases of cleanroom transitional monitoring (Pre-qualification through post-qualification EM) and explain what each type stands for. In addition to describing what has to be the basic content of a well-designed, effective and compliant EM Program; Joy will also go on to help participants comprehend the relationship between an EM Excursion Program and CAPA.

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This training session is of high value to Quality Control, Quality Assurance, Microbiologist, Facilities, Chemist, Analysts, Manufacturing, Validation, Engineering, Sterility Assurance, Compliance, Testing Technicians, Environmental Testing Personnel, Raw Materials Manufacturers, Clinical, Research and Development, and Laboratories.

Joy will cover the following areas at this webinar:

  • Applicable Regulations – Where does the EM Program fit in the Regulation? – Role of Clean room Environmental Monitoring Program?
  • Basics of Setting a Robust and Effective EM Program – Key Considerations – Relevant Material Verification Processes – Steps and Content of an EM Program Testing Procedure
  • Processing a Completed Environmental Monitoring Test Media – Sample Handling and Incubation – Documentation and Data Management of EM Test Results – What is the EM Test Data used for? – Retention of EM Test Results – Interpretation of EM Test Results
  • Basics of Designing an Effective and Compliant EM Trend Reports – Types; Content – Using Trend Report as a Critical Tool and Quality Metrics
  • Basics of Designing an Effective and Compliant EM Excursion Program – Types; Content – Handling EM Excursion Investigation – Handling Impacted Manufactured Batches – Disposition of Affected Products with Failed Clean room EM Test Results
  • Corrective and Preventative Action (CAPA) – Relationship between CAPA and EM Test Data Excursion Investigations Question and Answer Session.

Understanding HACCP and risk based HACCP

Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) is an important system aimed at bringing down the risk of safety hazards found in food consumed all over the world. It is an internationally recognized system. When it was enacted in January 2011 as part of the FDA’s Food Safety Modernization Act; it was considered a very sweeping piece of legislation for the food industry.

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Identification and control of potential hazards at specific point of the food chain is the soul of an HACCP system. The chain starts with production and ends with consumption. Identifying and controlling these hazards at every point of the chain is challenging in today’s world in which food has become completely globalized.

HACCP suggests the putting in place of mechanisms to control and counter the biological, chemical or physical hazards that could be present or be a potential presence in the food. The HACCP system is designed in such a way such that a company that manufactures, processes, or handles food products in any form can use HACCP for eliminating or minimizing food safety hazards present in its product to acceptable levels.

Implementation is based on two approaches

Proper implementation of the HACCP program involves food companies to implement both these:

  • Prerequisite programs
  • Implementation of HACCP plans

Prerequisite programs:

Prerequisite programs are those programs that a food organization has to put in place at its facility to ensure that all the processes that go into preventing contamination, ensuring a hygienic environment, and the optimal and scientific use of manufacturing methods and technologies and the cleanliness and hygiene of the staff involved in the production of food are proper and compliant.

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Implementation of HACCP plans:

If the prerequisite programs are required at the manufacturer-specific location; many steps and processes need to go into ensuring the quality standards of food that goes out of the facility. HACCP has suggested as many as seven steps for food is free from contamination. These are part of HACCP plans.

 

 

 

These include:

  1. Conducting a hazard analysis
  2. Identifying the critical control points
  3. Establishing a maximum or minimum limit for temperature, time, pH, salt level, chlorine level or other processing characteristics that control the hazard
  4. Establishing Critical Limits
  5. Establishing Monitoring Procedures
  6. Establishing Corrective Actions
  7. Establishing Record Keeping Procedures and Verification Procedures

Risk based preventive control is a major component of HACCP

HACCP has placed a heavy emphasis on risk in the production and transportation of food. It requires risk based preventive control. Codex Alimentarius describes risk assessment as a scientific process that takes the identification of a hazard, its characterization, assessment of the exposure to it, and characterization of risk into consideration.

Risk assessment is part of risk analysis, which in turn is described as a process into which three aspects, namely risk management, risk assessment and risk communication go. So, HACCP requires food manufacturers and transporters to take the risk causing factors into consideration at work. All these become part of risk based preventive controls.

Get the confusion cleared in implementing a risk based HACCP program

To clear the confusions in the meaning of these terms and to teach the ways of implementing them, Compliance4All, a leading provider of professional trainings for all the areas of regulatory compliance, will be organizing a webinar.  This webinar will clear the misunderstanding between these terms and show ways by which to implement a risk based HACCP program and ways of getting it right.

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Rotimi Toki, who is principal of Rottoks Food Safety Management Consulting Services Limited, will be the speaker at this webinar. Rotimi has provided services to some of the top brands in food service and manufacturing sectors and specializes in Quality Systems Audit, developing an integrated food safety management system based on HACCP principles. In order to gain complete understanding of the ways by which you can adapt and implement a risk based HACCP program, please register for this webinar by visiting Background of The HACCP system

Step-by-step method of developing an HACCP program

Rotimi will present a step-by-step process for developing an effective HACCP program. He will elucidate the principles and specific steps needed for this, for this is a prerequisite to building such a program. Through this process, Rotimi will show how participants can build a plan that can identify and control food safety hazards and risks specific to their product line and processes.

He will show how to determine the significance of these hazards by applying risk assessment techniques, from which a measure of risk can be obtained. This measure allows users to put appropriate control measures in place. He will clarify on the various confusions and weaknesses present in many food safety standards surrounding the determination of control measures required by HACCP.

Rotimi will cover the following areas at this webinar:

  • Background of The HACCP system
  • The CODEX Guidelines
  • Basic HACCP procedures
  • Assemble the HACCP Team
  • Describe product and identify intended use
  • Construct flow diagram and on-site confirmation of flow diagram
  • Hazard Analysis
  • Determining control measures in HACCP
  • Establish Critical Limits for each CCP
  • Establish a monitoring system for each CCP
  • Establish Corrective Actions
  • Verification procedures
  • Documentation and record keeping
  • Post-HACCP Maintenance

Uniform Customs and Practice standard and can be negotiated by over 30,000 banks worldwide

Letters of Credit are the primary instruments for assuring payment of goods sold internationally. This web session is designed to provide attendees with an end-to-end understanding of the L/C (letter of credit) process. From the beginning of a contractual agreement, through the letter of credit application process and actual negotiation of the L/C, this information-rich webinar will provide techniques that are indispensable to both importers and exporters.

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Why should you attend your staff should understand Letters of Credit. Even in today’s free trade-oriented business environment, companies must exercise particular caution when agreeing on payment terms. With financing choices that include cash in advance, open terms, letters of credit (L/C), sight drafts and time drafts, both importers and exporters need to understand the true implications of their credit policies and practices. By login with this Letters of Credit for Importers you may know.

These Things of the areas will be covered by the speaker Douglas Cohen

  • Gain a Comprehensive Understanding of the Letter of Credit Process
  • Learn how to Negotiate the Terms of both Import and Export L/Cs
  • Be 100% aware of Letter of Credit Documentation requirements
  • Be Aware of all Expenses Associated with Using Letters of Credit
  • Learn how to Avoid Amendments and Discrepancies

Understand the role of banks and freight forwarders in the L/C process.

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  • Documentary Credits Defined
  • Letters of Credit for Exporters
  • Sight Drafts and Time Drafts
  • Documentation Requirements
  • Letters of Credit for Importers
  • The Letter of Credit Process
  • Amendments and Discrepancies

Those who are the experts benefited by this

  • Exporters
  • Logistics and Trade Professionals
  • International Sales Executives
  • Customs Brokers
  • Freight Forwarders
  • Airlines
  • Steamship Lines
  • International Banking Personnel
  • Professors and Students of Global Trade

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Douglas Cohen has been at the forefront of international trade and transactions. With positions in private law practice, US Department of Commerce, the European Union, IATA, and American Airlines, he has developed significant expertise in import-export operations and compliance, global transactions, international negotiations, intellectual property, and cross-cultural business communication. At present, Mr. Cohen is Senior Manager, Global Trade and Contracts at Worldwide Trade and Legal Associates (WWTL), where he provides legal and strategic advice to organizations seeking to enter or expand foreign markets.

In addition, he is the director of WWTL’s Global Trade Compliance Training division, where he offers comprehensive import-export training to private companies, universities, and pubic organizations.

Mr Cohen has been asked to teach university courses and corporate seminars on international business and law in the US, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. He is the author of numerous publications on Internet law, international contract negotiations, intellectual property protection, and import-export operations and compliance.