Right, Do You Expect…
Michael Jordan to extend his ‘Airtime’-
On Fish & Chips?
An Aston Martin One-77
To run on diesel?
Or, Usain Bolt-
On Egg, Sausage, Chips and Beans?
Then, how do you expect a state-of-the-art system-
To run on this?
ICX4… Keepin’ It Real
Given time, most people are prepared to admit, to presenting the world with the most situationally appropriate version of themselves, they’re able to muster. If true, even the most steadfast amongst us harbours more than a singular version of her/himself. For some, the variations are stark. Others, less so but either way, discrepancys exist.
While our work and sporty incarnations might be similar – you know, all competitive and whanot. It is hoped that the representive being introduced to prospective in-laws or employers, bears no resemblence to the version ranting and raving on the platform, after another cancellation. These aspects of ourselves are represented online and like our ‘rea life’ selves are not entirely, without deviation.
Our home-self appears on the Electoral Roll as: MS J M Cardew.
Work-self, according to our Pay Slip, Jasmin Cardew.
Gym-self, according to our gym membership and, in accordance with our gym persona: Jaz Cardew
Commuter-self and the name on railcard – Jazmin Maria Cardew.
Entity Resolution pulls all these disparate strands together to create a singular and comprehensive online entity. From a personal perspective, were such efficient and painless ‘Off-line’ alignment presented, I’d be highly delighted as the alternative, one suspects, entails a great deal of time, money and, rather intensive, therapy.
The link below is to an interesting development in Ent Res-
A Punter’s Perspective to
General Data Protection Regulation
As a Sky subscriber, I really resent having to key-in a four-digit pin-code, to view a boxset I have already paid for. It’s my account, my telly and, my money. Why should I have to keep keying in numbers? My compliance is accompanied by a bitter thirty second rant against the Nannie State. This is prior to seque-waying into a diatribe over how much I’m paying each month. This takes up another half minute….
The two seconds it takes to click the remote four times, tends to expose my tantrum for the pointless, time-consuming indulgence it is. Making matters worse, not only am I aware of the code’s raison d’etre but approve of it. The pass-code ensures that no subscriber’s off-spring will be opting for Game of Thrones, Boardwalk Empire, or Breaking Bad. Over Dinosaur Train, Gravity Falls or Super Why!
GDPR is being depicted as a monstrous liberty inflicted on world commerce by those know-nothing bureaucrats, at the EU. I’m not buying it as any organisation in full compliance with the DPA (in Europe DPD) is unlikely to find the transition to GDPR traumatic. Nor, will those making a genuine to comply. Organisations who have ignored the march of time by continuing to run fast and loose with Personal Data however, may wish to buckle up and hold on tight, because General Data Protection Regulation is going to a bumpy ride.
For companies viewing GDPR as a nightmare, the only thing matching the complexity of its rules, is the draconian nature of its fines. It is precisely this type of organisation that has necessitated the evolvement of statutory requirements from what exists, into GDPR. The Data industry has seen an exponential growth over the last twenty years and the value of personal data has grown accordingly.
GDPR includes Privacy by Design through understanding legislation alone does cannot ensure privacy but that it (Privacy) must be a fundamental component in the design and maintenance of information systems, along with being the Modus Operandi for all organisations. The new legislation extends the Right to Erasure and To Be Forgotten by including information that’s currently existent on on the web.
Any Organisation adopting my passcode attitude to GDPR ensures that their task will be torturous and quite probably doomed to failure. It is extremely difficult anything as onerous as GDPR if one’s not able to ‘get on board’ with it. This legislation is of immeasurable benefit to the people of Europe (Including UK) and eventually, to those of the entire planet. positively impact every human being on the planet. The move is to embrace it. Because, like the pin-code, it’s positive progression and truth be told… You’ve got no choice.
Through a myriad course of events, the details of which differ according to source, the state of Nevada legalised gambling, in 1931. It would take another fourteen years and the arrival of Benjamin ‘Bugsy’ Siegal in a small desert town, for the state’s legislature to make significant impact. Bugsy Siegal held The Flamingo’s grand opening, on the 26th of January 1946 and despite its success, died from gunshot wounds, just 24 months later. While Bugsy’s name will be forever synonymous with Las Vegas, that of Gary Loveman will, to those outside of the US gaming industry, remain obscure. Yet Gary Loveman is responsible for revolutionising the casino operating procedure and enabling the shot-callers on the Strip, to generate more profit in single a night than Bugsy managed, during his entire tenure.
Having been initially employed by Harrah’s Entertainment on a consultancy basis, in 1997, Loveman wrote to the Chief Executive, detailing how the company could expand its revenue. Gary also offered his services and was taken for another stint, as a consultant. One which culminated in Gary being appointed Harrah’s Chief Operating Officer. A position he maintained for five years and during which, he innovated the company’s ‘Total Rewards’ loyalty scheme. Via which, Harrah collected and analysed patterns in client spending. The data findings shocked the world’s gaming industry by revealing that the humble Slot-player, pumping in those quarters, generated far higher profits, than the industry’s fabled High Rollers.
2003 saw Loveman appointed as Harrah’s Chief Executive, replacing the man who had employed him, Phil Satra. Within a year, through the acquisition of Caesars Entertainment, Loveman turned Harrah’s into world’s largest Casino operator. Loveman oversaw various other purchases prior to, in 2008, taking the Harrah’s from a Public, to Private company.
The economic downturn of 2007/8 saw Loveman navigate dangerous waters by cutting cost and restructuring dept. His last mayor coup was in 2013 when he launched Caesars Online Gambling. In 2015, Loveman’s story paralleled that of Bugsy, his infamous predecessor. For, having changed the very concepts casinos operated on and dramatically improving his partners profit margins, he was now losing them money; Caesars was facing bankruptcy. Fortunately for Loveman times and Vegas had changed. Gary Loveman stepped down as CEO and has, at least to date, not been shot by anyone.
The Links below display the numerous ways Las Vegas deploys Data Analytics to enhance the customer experience and of course, increase profitability.
Big Data at MGM Casinos
Big Data deployed in catching cheating gamblers-
An interesting article on Gary Loveman-
Above, Freddie’s flag folly.
The True Story Behind Muddy Marbles
Freddie ran through the playground clutching Bobby Charlton to his chest. Having instigated a swap with Nathaniel West, who was in the year above and held all the (Panini) cards, Freddie was ecstatic. To the utter amazement of his classmates, Freddie not only had acquired Bobby Charlton but he had got him a for a couple of Leeds players and half a stick of Wrigley’s.
Word of Freddie’s deal spread, not only the school but the entire village. Before anyone knew it, Freddie had swapped a couple of Coventry and Forest players, for Georgie Best. As the owner of a complete Panini 69 collection, Freddie was acknowledged the Swap King and before long, found himself conducting swaps on behalf of half-a-dozen of his classmates. Then, came ‘Mexico 70’ and with it, a host of collectables. Alongside a special Panini sticker collection, there were Esso Shell World Cup coins, Texaco player busts, Total Petrol’s Gold Figure Set, Sugar Smacks action figures, free with each box. The array of collectables for Mexico 70, was mind-boggling.
Concerns within Freddie’s investors began when he seemed, to them at least, to be giving far too many items to complete collections. Who really cared if they had all Total’s gold figures when it had cost them half of their Shell World Cup coins? Freddie though, assured them that he knew what he was doing. Matters came to a head though, on the eve of the World Cup Final. Freddie got wind that his rival, the bespectacled Barry Barclay, was in negotiations for a complete set of little plastic World Cup flags. The sixteen flags representing each of the countries to have reached the finals. Freddie was incensed. He had grown to dislike Barry, partially due to his weird accent but mostly, because Barry Barclay had a Chopper.
Determined to scupper the deal Freddie made a counter offer but it was turned down. The owner of the flags was a girl who cared little for Panini stickers or even, World Cup coins. If Freddie wanted those flags he was going to have to pull something special out of the bag. His inner circle was doubtful. The World Cup was practically over and interest as had waned the instant England went out so, who cared about a load of flags? Freddie did. He was determined to stop Barry getting them and with a satchel loaded with Mexico 70 collectables, he made his way to Abn Amro’s house. A flag waving Freddie left an hour later with an empty satchel. He had done the deal and stopped Barry Barclay. Double bubble was how Freddie saw it…
A fortnight on, Freddie found himself front of the Headmistress, facing questions over the whereabouts of his classmate’s possessions. The short answer was Abn Amro’s house but ultimately everything they had, was tied up in those flags. Items even Freddie now viewed as useless. Tired of his unhelpful attitude, the Head called in Freddie’s parents and, after hours of intensive negotiation, Freddie’s bail-out plan was, finally agreed…
His parents would pay each of the other boys a fiver on the proviso that he worked that debt off in chores over the next two years. Freddie felt it draconian, while also having the sense to keep his mouth, firmly shut.
The measures laid down by his parents, while punitive, a least made sense. The Headmistress’s stipulations however, left Freddie most befuddled. She claimed that his status as school’s second most successful swapper (Dam – you Barry Barclay), left little room for other kids to gain a foothold in what was after all, a time-honoured boyhood pastime. Her words, not Fred’s.
Her plan for remedying this entailed Freddie selling off ‘at a fair price’ a section of his amalgamated wealth. Naturally, the Swap-king (Barring BB) was against the plan but again, felt it best not to express his feelings. It was eventually agreed that his marble collection, which vast, would be sold off. Freddie was disappointed on two counts. Firstly, those marbles were one of his first ventures into collecting and two, the wheeling and dealing that went into them is something he was rightly proud of.
Below, the syndicate’s marbles.
At the time of it being confiscated by the Headmistress, Freddie’s marbles had been inflated by donations from his friends. These had been made due to a muted mega-swap with Barry Barclay. Barry had proffered his entire Batman anthology, cards (Complete collection), action figures and Bat-mobile… For their marbles.
Eventually and much to the Headmistress’s delight, Santi, Spanish kid who’d joined school only a year earlier, showed an interest in Freddie’s marbles. Much to Freddie’s annoyance everything appeared to be going swimmingly, at least had been, until they got into the deal’s fine details. The problem was, how many of marbles were Freddie’s and how many, belonged to his pals?
Santi gave up once but with the encouragement of the Headmistress, came back and tried again. While Freddie didn’t want to sell, the pressure for him to do so, was intense. Yet, no matter how hard they tried, the task of separating these marbles, was proving impossible. Many had been branded but not only had much of the marks been scratched off and when a label, for instance blue paint, remained intact, more than one boy claimed the colour.
ICX4 were an odd bunch no one else took much notice of and as such, could call themselves whatever they liked. They had first formed in ‘Computer Club’. This was held every day, after school, in the Science block. Frustrated by the imposed time limits, they took to meeting on Saturday and Sunday mornings. With each member taking turns to host. As there weren’t that many ICX4-ers, none of the parents objected and truth be told, most were relieved that their kid finally had friends that weren’t imaginary.
Below, two ICX4-ers, doing maths.
With no form of social life to distract them, the Boffins conducted experiment after experiment, until eventually becoming so confident that, on hearing of the Marbles fiasco, boldly claimed that they could fix the problem by:
Developing an approach that combines Resolving the Identity of a data entity against a known end state by means of a comprehensive Content Engine which contains an implementation of a commercially universal entity set of Organisations, Individuals and Instruments (based on Client vendor data licences) all of which have been built into a single holistic ‘external universe’ – businessDNA addresses the issue of false positives by only Resolving to a Single Relevancy Entity and reduces False Positives, to a statistically minimal issue. With businessDNA the Identity of a Record is either Resolved or not Resolved and where it isn’t resolved, tells the processing team what possible entities the record could be. What entities are at the address provided and, if an entity of similar name, is in the locality.
No one at school listened. Undeterred, the ICX4 boffins continued their experiments into algorithms and all that. Now days they have three major financial institutions on their client roster. If you’ve no desire to lose your marbles, get in touch.
The Deepening Shark Pool
A (Fictitious) character by the name of Avon Barksdale (From The Wire)-
Strolls into a Baltimore City bank accompanied by two gents with ill-concealed handguns. At the counter, Avon fills in a form, giving a West Baltimore address. He then, opens a large suitcase and extracts bundles of very used notes. Half these bundles are soaked in what appears to be dried blood. The other half, covered in an almost an invisible film of white powder. Avon explains that there are another fifteen cases, over in the West Side projects, that he needs to shift, due to a cat named Omar-
Having got wind of them…
Were the above to occur, it is probable that enough will have been gleaned about Mr Barksdale to forgo KYC/AML and, very politely, decline his custom.
How convenient it would be if all drug dealers presented like Avon but they don’t. It is far more likely that we will encounter a character akin to-
Skyler presents as respectable and, despite her Car Washing business, being a potential Red-flag. The accounts, like Skyler, appear very professional. For those unfamiliar with Skyler White, she is a character from the acclaimed TV series ‘Breaking Bad’. In which, her husband Walter, who’s a Chemistry teacher. Uses his knowledge to manufacture drugs and Skyler, who’s a bookkeeper, uses hers, to ‘wash’ the money Walter amasses.
From a bank’s perspective, nothing about Skyler White will set alarm bells ringing. She has no Criminal Record, history of bankruptcy or any other fiscal impropriety. Her business is registered in Albuquerque rather than any off-shore Tax Heaven and, as stated, her books are clean. Even if the bank decides all cash based business warrant a Red Flag and monitor her company’s account no wild fluctuations will be discovered. Nor will anything else, warranting further investigation. Given which, how do banks ‘deter and detect’ the likes of Skyler White?
The screenshot below features an excerpt from a UK bank’s AML Policy:
AML Policy, and common sense, dictate banks verify all prospective clients are exactly who they are claiming to be. See below:
The Money Laundering Regulations 2007 and 2015 make it mandatory to apply a risk based approach to the verification of identity as well as further customer due diligence.
Verification of Identity won’t be difficult for Skyler as her identity is not what she’s lying about. What Skyler White’s lying about, is the money. Chances are, unless she makes a mistake Skyler is destined to remain undetected. As bookkeeper Mrs White will be conversant on US Tax Law and to a lesser extent, bank procedure but she is no criminal mastermind. The stark truth behind Compliance regulations is that they are of no value in deterring/detecting criminals, if the criminals themselves, abide by them.
What purpose then, do Compliance Rules serve? They ensure that if a bank follows protocol, it covers itself from potential liability by way damaged reputation (they care), fines (ditto) and prosecution. Civil or Criminal. So, if the Regs don’t help detect (Which deters) criminals, what does? The answer and large elephant in the bank, is extraordinary simple: Clean Data. Without which, all else is, and I personally guarantee this, futile.
Aside from a multitude of other benefits, clean data enables us to create a Single Client View and once that’s achieved, Skyler days are numbered. Because, while it’s relatively easy for a criminal enterprise to maintain a façade of propriety on one, two, maybe even three fronts. Applying that discipline to every aspect of its operation is considerably more difficult. Monitoring a suspect account in isolation is an exercise in futility but once we have access to the entire fiscal flow, we’ll find the leaks because where criminal activity exists, regardless of the level of sophistication, there will be a leak-somewhere.
In the instance of Skyler, Single Client view reveals two other Albuquerque bank accounts for her Car Wash, displaying the same levels of income. Skyler is not a professional career criminal and as such, despite her relative intelligence, is rumbled the instant the spotlight is on her. How convenient it would be if all drug-dealers presented as Skyler White but they don’t. It is far more likely we’ll encounter a character akin to….
She has two other accounts, in might be able to resist new cars and expensive holidays but how long can she resist paying for an operation for her disabled son. Or begin ploughing money into a fund for her new-born daughter’s education.
Company & Personal Off-shore Tax Avoidance
Prior to continuance, it might be useful to explain the technical difference between Tax Evasion and Tax Avoidance. The former earns you a slap on the wrists. The latter, a spell on the dreaded diet de porridge.
By Darcy Kimble & Mick Mahoney
Amateur Hour in Saint Hellier
Mr Walker is what is known as an entrepreneurial type, who runs a string of successful businesses. For some-time Mr Walker had found himself growing increasingly resentful by the demands made on him by the Revenue Service.
Who, in Mr Walker’s view, were being most unreasonable. One morning whilst delivering spirits to ‘The Crown’, Walker poured his heart out to Patrick, the establishment’s owner and an upstanding member of Walmington-on-Sea’s business community. Pat informs Walker that an off-shore Shell company will save him a few tears and a few pounds, to boot.
Initially, the entrepreneur is sceptical but at the Dog-track that evening, mentions it to a fellow member of the racing fraternity, who appears most surprised that Walker is ‘Still out of the coup’. With no desire to remain ‘out of it’ Walker investigates the matter and in no time, sources a list of companies who, for a fee, undertake the entire process for him. However, Walker did not build an empire by paying extortionate fees for, from what he could gather, was a straight-forward task. As it’s geographically the closest to Walmington-on-Sea, Walker opts for Jersey as his Tax-haven.
A month later, with his license approved by the ‘Jersey Regulation of Undertakings Office’, Walker flies over to Saint Hellier for a meeting with Jersey Financial Services Commission. Because the new company will trade under a different name and to ensure all the wheels are oiled, he hires a local solicitor.
Three hours later and £700 pounds lighter, Walker emerges from the offices of the Jersey Financial Services with a registered Limited Liability Company, boasting a registered Jersey address. The cost of his new venture ‘Walker’s Laundry’ breaks into; license fee is £30. Formation fee, £200. Admin £70. Solicitor, £450. Walker felt quite pleased with himself. Especially, as non-resident business owner, he would pay a flat rate of £600 per annum in Income Tax. From the café overlooking Saint Hellier Marina, Mr Walker strode, almost giddily, for the nearest-
On being ushered into a side-room, Mr Walker presents his passport by way of identification and supplies his Company Registration (Including Jersey address and statement of Incorporation SoI), the address of his Registrar (This coincides with that of his solicitor and that of, Walker’s Laundry).
Once back in Walmington, Walker pops out for a celebratory pint in ‘The Crown’. It is during his seventh, that Patrick finds the time to explain that getting the money into Jersey was easy part. The difficult and potentially illegal bit, is getting it back in. Needless to say, this puts a dampener on Walker’s seventh pint and causes him to sink, several more.
However, within weeks, the entrepreneur devises a method of getting his cash out of Jersey and into Walmington. Having done so, he sets about offering the same service to various other local businessmen. To ensure his ten-percent cut, Walker insists on becoming a nominee director of each company he registers. This enables him to see the books without the facility of withdrawing money.
Amongst those who join-in on Walker’s ‘Coup’ is Mr Jones, the town’s butcher. Originally, Jones had been reluctant but his new fiancé, who some suspected of leading the old boy astray, insisted on his participation.
Below, Mr Jones and his fiancé.
Trouble on the Home-front
Walmington-on-Sea’s bank is managed by Mr Mainwaring, who knew Walker on two fronts and didn’t like him, on either. Initially, the relationship was restricted to Walker being a bank customer but had developed on the creation of Walmington-on-Sea’s Second World War Re-enactment Group. Of which, Mr Mainwaring, having proclaimed himself a Captain, was the group’s highest-ranking officer. It hadn’t gone down well with the rest of the men.
Above, Mainwaring with some of the Re-enactment group.
The antipathy between Walker and Mainwaring was primarily down to their opposing personality-types. Walker, flashy and fast. Mainwaring, sober and steadfast. The bank-manager’s dislike had intensified of late. It was one thing Walker withdrawing his funds from the bank- good riddance- being Mainwaring’s view. It was another, him taking a Frazer the Undertaker’s, Jones the Butcher’s and Hodges, the Milkman’s money, along with him. Ideally, he’d like to know where they had taken it. Knowing Walker, it would be some sort of fly-by-night scheme that would cost the others dear. Mainwaring had discussed the matter with Wilson, his Assistant Manager and Wilson, had mentioned it to Pike. One of the bank’s junior staff. Normally, Pike would have kept out of it because he considered Mr Mainwaring an old windbag but as Walker had not only sold him a faulty PlayStation 5, but was now refusing to refund his money. Pike decided to investigate the matter…
Below, Pike, on discovering that Walker will not return his PS5 payment.
A few months previously, the bank had installed some new software called ‘Compliance DNA’. A big fuss had been made and there was a two-day course in how to use it. Of the three attendees, one had emigrated, another left to work in retail and Maureen, was currently on Maternity Leave. Pike, who fiddled about with the system during the bank’s slower periods, found it self-explanatory and now wanted to put his fiddling to effective use by making Walker regret not refunding £400 Pike had paid for the PlayStation.
Which is exactly what he did. Though Compliance DNA, Pike locates all of Walker’s bank accounts and links them, to create a Single Customer View. Once this is achieved, Pike has a complete view of all Walker’s fiscal activities and sees that some of these have been ‘Flagged’ by the system. These fall under ‘Suspicious Activities’ and from what Pike can gather, are generated through Walker’s becoming a director of six different companies that he has incorporated. All Off-shore and all, within a matter of months. One seeing these Flags, Pike triggers an internal process that will certify a risk mitigation protocol is in place and Enhanced Due Diligence is payed.
Un-beknown to Walker, his name is now a Suspicious Activity Report. Pike wondered how Mr Mainwaring was going to call him a ‘Stupid boy’ now?